HOME < UNITEL Technologies < Experience
Refinery research systems can be categorized into a number of logical groups based upon an end user’s research and development goals.  These goals drive everything in the design of the system.  The degree of instrumentation, system size and through put, batch versus continuous design, daily versus 24/7 operation,  and product recovery and purification.  The reasons that end users build and operate research systems vary from catalyst development and catalyst screening to process development and technical service.

Catalyst Screening Units

The design of Catalyst Screening Units   revolves around the manufacturing of small batches of new catalysts. CSU’s are typically small in scale, made from esoteric materials due to typically aggressive chemistry and are operated in batch mode.  These systems quite often work in differential reactor mode to allow for reaction mechanism investigation. Other designs allow for rapid screening in integral reactor mode of large numbers of catalysts.

Catalyst Development Units

CDU’s are typically larger than CSU’s and normally emulate the envisioned commercial reactor in a smaller scale.

Catalyst Deactivation Units

Fresh FFC catalysts are too active to be used directly in pilot operations.  Catalyst deactivation is accomplished by subjecting the catalyst in a fluidized state to high temperature in the presents of steam.

Catalyst Aging Units

These systems are used to test catalyst life cycle.  Some systems are designed to rapidly age catalysts while others are operate at normal conditions for long periods of time.


These systems can include multiple reactors, fresh hydrogen feed, hydrogen recycle with amine scrubbing and drying, inter stage hydrogen quench, reactor effluent stabilization, and fractionation.


These systems can include multiple reactors, fresh hydrogen feed, hydrogen recycle with amine scrubbing and drying.

Feed Stock Prep Units

These systems are typically composed of an atmospheric column upstream of a vacuum fractionation column if run in a continuous mode.  Batch wise the devices is a large scale version of a true boiling point apparatus.

Autothermal & Steam Reforming

Units from 1kW up to 1000 normal cubic meters per hour. 

  Hydroprocessing Pilot Plant  
  Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel Hydro Desulfurization Systemwith Molten Salt  Bath Reactor Heating  
  Refinery Pilot Plant  
  Hydrocracking System with Molten Salt Bath Reactor Heating  
  Molten Salt Integral Reactor  
  Molten Salt Bath Reactor Furnace and Reactor  
  Lube Oil Pilot Plant  
  Base Oil Hydroprocessing System with Electric Furnace Reactor Heating, Stabilizer Column and Fractionation Column