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June 17, 2008

Bulgarian refinery to upgrade with Axens’ technology

Gerald Ondrey

Lukoil Neftochim Burgas AD, a subsidiary of the Russian oil major Lukoil (Moscow;, has selected Axens (Rueil-Malmaison, France;  to design and license technologies to convert Urals blend vacuum residue and gasoil (VGO) at its
165,000-bbl/d petroleum refinery in Burgas, Bulgaria.

The heavy-ends upgrader combines a 47,000 bbl/d (2.5 million m.t./yr) H-Oil
ebullated-bed vacuum residue hydrocracker and a 37,000 bbl/d (1.8 million m.t./yr) HyK singlestage high-conversion hydrocracker to produce a high quality slate of distillate products. The feed for the HyK unit will be a 50:50 mixture of straight run and H-Oil produced VGOs. The H-Oil equipped with Axens’ inter-stage separation (IS2) and HyK units will be integrated through a common hydrogen-management scheme that minimizes capital investment while enabling the independent operation of the two units. The H-Oil unit will also benefit from cascade catalyst utilization (C2U) that minimizes operating costs and maximizes unit profitability. The upgrader is scheduled to come on stream in 2012.

This will be the third H-Oil upgrader in Europe to operate on Urals blend and the first to integrate HyK technology. The 34,000 bbl/d (1.8 million m.t./yr) PKN-Orlen unit in Plock, Poland has been operating for nearly ten years and has recently started up a Prime-D unit integrated with the H-Oil. The 60,000 bbl/d (3.0 million m.t./yr) Mozyr unit was licensed in 2006 and also features an integrated Prime-D unit.

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