Selective removal of neutral nitrogen compounds from heavy gas oil

Heavy gas oil (HGO) obtained from Athabasca bitumen is very difficult to hydrotreat due to high sulfur and nitrogen content. It is proposed that removal of non-basic nitrogen species from HGO prior to hydrotreating will strongly enhance desulfurization process and improve the length of catalytic cycle. The goal of this research is to develop a novel pretreatment process employing heterogeneously cross-linked macroporous polymer poly(glycidyl methacrylate) (PGMA) as the hydrophilic support coupled with different organic compounds such as tetranitrofluorenone (TEFN) for selective removal of neutral nitrogen heterocyclic compounds from HGO. The proposed project if successful will have a major impact on efficient removal of nitrogen and sulfur atoms from HGO derived from Athabasca bitumen and will benefit oil sands operations in Western Canada, particularly Syncrude Canada Ltd. and Suncor Ltd. who are the main producer of synthetic crude oil from oil sands.

Faculty Supervisor:

Dr. Ajay Dalai


Emma Aryee, Sandeep Badoga & Prachee Misra


Syncrude Canada Ltd.


Engineering - chemical / biological


Oil and gas


University of Saskatchewan



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