Nuclear industry news


Rosatom has signed a contract for supplying 50 tons of ceolite catalysts to Kazakhstan

Together with other orders it will provide operating rate in nonnuclear production at the Novosibirsk Chemical Concentrates Plant. Novosibirsk Chemical Concentrates Plant (NCCP, TVEL’s enterprise) has been oriented to satisfy the needs of nuclear industry from its very founding. The product the plant is traditionally famous for not only in Russia but also abroad is fuel for nuclear stations and research reactors. However as early as in the beginning of the 90-ies the plant started thinking about new productions. 
“It became clear that the scope of production we used to have was going to decrease, - says Alexander Alexandrov, the plant’s Deputy General Director for Production. – We produce fuel for nuclear reactors which have their operating life; it’s quite clear that when it comes to an end, the fuel is not needed anymore, while the new ones hardly appear. On the other hand, the market stability of NPP fuel market allows us to invest the money made on this into other productions. That’s why as early as in the beginning of the 90-ies there appeared an idea to try producing catalysts for oil and gas industry. 
Turning oil to petrol
Oil of different kinds, extracted from different deposits, has its own chemical composition and should not be processed the same way. There are different technological cycles and catalysts. The ceolite catalysts technology, offered by the Institute of Catalysis of the Russian Academy of Science and adopted by NCCP is ideal for small volumes processing, which allows locating minor processing enterprises close to the deposits. 
The plant started producing ceolite catalysts in 1993. “Unfortunately, political events in the country affected the state target programs, including the idea of building mini-plants for oil refining, which was forgotten, - Mr. Alexandrov recalls. – However we went on producing catalysts until 1998, with the main plant’s sales area being abroad. We supplied catalysts to Poland, Kirgizia and some other countries”. 
In 2000 the situation in the country changed, the state again started looking in the direction of oil-refining industry. At the plant they re-estimated perspectives and decided to start the catalysts production anew. “This time we updated our previous project using the big part of our equipment, - Mr. Alexandrov tells. – Taking into consideration acquired experience we made some changes in equipment scheme and established the production in the end of 2006. If before we had been producing just one type of catalysts, our new production allowed us to make three types: for oil refining and petrochemical production”. 
Ceolite catalyst oil refining technology (zeoforming) is economically more efficient than traditional reforming. Zeoforming is done with lower temperatures thus saving resources. Besides, the technology results in bigger amount of high-quality petrol.  Also, organizing such a production suggests lower capital investments, needing fewer operations, thus reducing the number of equipment needed. 
The scope of production is growing day by day. It is ecologically safe – neither raw feedstock nor final product affect environment or humans negatively. Signing contract with Kazakhstan brings production to the new level. 
Universal production
50 tons of ceolite catalysts are to be sent to Kazakhstan, the contract will last two years. “Our potential allows us to build one of the major plants in the CIS for winter diesel fuel, kerosene oil and further – high-octane petrol, - says Vladimir Grishenko, General Director of “Astana Oil” Oil House” company.  This product is hard to find both in Kazakhstan and in Russia. I’m very happy with our partnership with NCCP. All tests were successful and, taking into consideration our experience in oil refining we made a clear-cut solution to use ceolite catalysts produced by NCCP. I’m signing this contract with great pleasure”.
Russian plant doesn’t have any doubts about its capabilities to satisfy the foreign client’s needs. Modern production is a universal technological line, able to produce several nomenclatures of catalysts based on different types of ceolite, including catalysts for new technologies of hydrocarbon crude processing: BIMT, Zeoforming, hydrocarbon direct conversion process, diesel oil deparaffination process, black oil fuel cat cracking. 
The production of ceolite catalysts for oil-gas industry at NCCP fully corresponds TVEL’s development strategy, one of its directions being   business diversification and expanding part of nonnuclear production. According to preliminary estimations in 2013 the income from non-atomic production realization will be more than RUB 1.1 billion. More than half of it is commercial lithium production, but in the nearest future one of the most prospective non-atomic products will be ceolite catalysts. 
Source: Rosatom Newsletter