MANUAL Published: 29 April 2013

Fluid Catalytic Cracking


Fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) is the most versatile secondary processing unit which produces high value distillates and light olefins from heavy petroleum residues. As a process it is nearly seventy years old and was primarily developed for making gasoline. Over these years, continuous improvements in hardware and catalyst systems enabled this process to expand its application span, offered flexibility, and also achieved superior product yields. The advent of zeolite based catalysts has brought in step change in yield as well as quality of gasoline, which also led to the development of riser cracking technology. Improved understanding of the reaction chemistry helped optimize the hardware, process conditions, and catalyst system to maximize gasoline, distillates, or olefins selectively. Further, the development of catalyst additives enabled FCC process to effectively handle environmental and fuel quality issues. FCC process is the highest value adding unit in refinery and hence continuous efforts are being made to improve the process through advanced modeling, optimization, and catalyst management. In this chapter the basic FCC process, and developments in system hardware, catalyst, and additives have been presented. Process and catalyst design guidelines, selection, monitoring, and process optimization aspects were summarized, and future challenges and opportunities were discussed.

Author Information

Voolapalli, Ravi, Kumar
Bharat Petroleum Corp., Ltd., Greater Noida, IN
Thota, Chiranjeevi
Bharat Petroleum Corp., Ltd., Greater Noida, IN
Gokak, D., T.
Bharat Petroleum Corp., Ltd., Greater Noida, IN
Choudary, N., V.
Hindustan Petroleum Corp., Ltd., Beguluru, IN
Siddiqui, M., A.
Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, New Delhi, IN
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Developed by Committee: D02
Pages: 127–158
DOI: 10.1520/MNL5820131211806
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-8681-1
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-7022-3