Project Description

DSU™ Commercialization

Project period: 07/2016 - 08/2017

Field Upgrading Limited (Field) is commercializing their breakthrough heavy oil desulphurization technology (DSU™). The DSU™ process can take heavy oils and refinery bottoms and produce a product that fully complies with the ISO standard for marine fuels and is compatible with other bunkers and blend stocks. DSU™ also significantly increases the API gravity of the feedstocks while achieving a relatively higher yield compared to conventional technologies. In the case of oil sands bitumen, the API gravity is increased from 8 API to over 18 API, significantly reducing the need for diluent for pipeline transportation. The DSU™ process is much cleaner with no direct SOx, NOx, PM or GHG emissions and does not leave big piles of coke or asphaltenes behind. Field operates a pilot facility in Fort Saskatchewan to showcase the DSU™ technology. Using a custom designed impeller by Ekato, the pilot can process a range of sour heavy feedstocks from bitumen to refinery bottoms, including vacuum residue and asphaltenes. Field will use this pilot plant to gather the engineering data to scale up a design to the next stage commercial unit. Field and Ekato will partner to complete a series of tests at the pilot. This data will be evaluated and modeled at Ekato’s facility in Germany so that an optimized full-scale design can be engineered and priced. This project has the potential to expand the opportunity for both submitting companies. For Ekato, it is an opportunity to showcase their expertise and equipment in Alberta in an oil and gas application, using Field’s pilot facility, and to open up a new application for additional sales. Field receives the benefit of Ekato’s vast mixing expertise as we look to scaleup and commercialize the DSU process plus it provides us the exposure to the European market where we see great opportunity for our technology in the marine fuel market.

Field Upgrading Limited

Location: Calgary, Canada
Founded: 2012
Staff: 15 employees

Field Upgrading is a Canadian company, based in Calgary, Alberta dedicated to the development and commercialization of an innovative new process to enhance the value of heavy oil by removing sulphur and metals. DSU™ uses molten sodium to significantly reduce the levels of sulphur, metals, acid (TAN) and asphaltenes in heavy oil feedstocks, including oil sands bitumen. Preliminary cost estimates indicate that the technology compares favourably against conventional technologies with lower capital costs and higher operating margins and is also conducive to relatively small-scale applications. Field operates a pilot facility and is now starting the feasibility study for a larger scale demonstration plant – The Cleaners Seas Project - that will be completed for 2020. Field Upgrading has 15-member core team with experience in all the key areas of engineering design and executing large-scale commercial projects.

EKATO Rühr- und Mischtechnik GmbH

Location: Schopfheim, Germany
Founded: 1933
Staff: 425 employees

EKATO is leading in the development and manufacture of industrial agitators, reactors, mechanical seals as well as vacuum process mixers and -dryers for more than 80 years, offering customers a wide spectrum ranging from engineering services up to process development and process optimization. Ekato serves sectors including chemicals, plastics and polymers, paints and coatings, flue gas desulfurization for power stations, hydrometallurgy and cosmetics. The mixing division, Ekato RMT, has state-of –the-art simulation and evaluation methods to scale-up to production scale, with more than 250,000 agitators supplied to industry. They will use this expertise and facilities for this project.