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BPCL develops technology to test quality of crude oil

Monday, 06 Apr 2020
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The Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL) has developed a novel technology to test the quality of crude oil at a fraction of the cost and time that it takes now through lengthy lab tests.

The technology, which has a number of patents including those from the US and the EU, is a 'crude horoscope predictor tool' called BPMarrk, which can optimise varied properties from the crude. The company is also in talks with leading international companies in the crude assaying industry like Aspen, the largest in the segment, Honeywell, and Emerson.

The traditional way of assaying takes 30-45 days for a complete testing and the cost averages at Rs 25 lakh. But BPMarrk takes around 30 minutes for a four-stage test.

The company is planning to use the technology as an advance control product for product optimisation and going to apply for patents for this as well. BPCL has been developing the technology since FY16 and reached commercial production stage two years ago. Since then, it has made a detailed presentation to the American Petroleum Institute which is the global body that codifies the testing standards for the industry.

The institute was keen to develop this tool as an alternate standard, provided BPCL shared the entire details, but the company refused. BPMarrk can predict around 500 properties of any crude using four parameters and can help generate the output within an hour compared to the other conventional processes which require three-four weeks of laboratory testing.

The tool has been built by testing more than 100 types of crudes from different regions. This universal tool can be used by multiple stakeholders across the crude value-chain for fast business and operational decisions related to crude buying/booking and price negotiations.

BPMarrk can also enable oil suppliers, international trades and supply-chain optimisation for advanced planning, crude selection and also for process engineers for unit-level optimisation of refinery operations. BPCL is in the process of partnering with a leading international consultant for real-time optimisation.

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