Catalytic processing of the acid tars
Article PDF


acid tar; catalytic cracking; oil processing; fuel; utilization

How to Cite

Krymets, G. V., Litynska, M. I., & Melnychuk, O. V. (2022). Catalytic processing of the acid tars. Catalysis and Petrochemistry, (33), 84-88.


Acid tars are wastes from the processing of coal, petroleum, and petrochemicals (oil refining, benzene refining and petroleum fractions refining and alkylation of isobutane with butenes). Acid tar compositions include resinous substances, organic matter, and polymerization products of unsaturated hydrocarbons. The presence of free sulfuric acid in acid tars often reaches 70 % by weight. Almost all metals from oil are concentrated in tars, and the content of vanadium and nickel can reach 0.046 and 0.014 %, respectively. A lot of countries keep acid tar in the open air in spent quarries, storage ponds, barns, lagoons or near landfills. It poses a risk or even potential threat to people and to the environment nearby due to soil, water, and air pollution. Thus, disposal of the acid tars is a very important ecological and industrial task. In this study, we have researched catalytic cracking and distillation as the utilization methods for acid tar. Anhydrous AlCl3 was used as a catalyst during the cracking of petroleum residues to obtain  volatile gasoline fractions due to its catalytic activity in many organic reactions. The catalyst ratios (0.15 g/g of tar or 0.1 g/g of tar) had a very significant influence on the number of volatile fractions and boiling temperature in the acid tar cracking process. According to the results of 1H NMR research, the main components of volatile fractions in the case of catalytic cracking were alkanes CH3-(CH2)n-CH3. The compositions of these fractions were similar to the compositions of gasoline and diesel fuel. A series of distillation experiments (distillation of previously deacidified and centrifuged tar, acid tar without deacidification and centrifugation, and previously deacidified tar without centrifu-gation) gave different results for each type of material. Aliphatic hydrocarbons were the main components of volatile fractions (~ 80, ~ 60 and ~ 90 %, respectively) and the contents of aliphatic S-organic compounds were also significant (~ 10, ~ 30 and ~ 8 %). Thus, both for catalytic cracking and for tar distillation, aliphatic hydrocarbons were the main component of volatile fractions. Deacidification of tar increased the yield of aliphatic hydrocarbons during tar distillation and decreased production of S-organic compounds due to its reactions with calcium carbonate. It is perspective in the context of fuel production.
Article PDF


Leonard S. A., Stegemann J. A., Roy A. Characterization of acid tars. Journal of Hazardous Materials. 2010. 175(1-3). 382-392.

Knapcová I., Samešová D. Problems of waste acid tars (Goudrons). Acta Facultatis Ecologiae. 2017. 36(1). 29-37. [in Slovakian]

Danha C., Chihobo C. H., Musademba D., Simbi D. J., Kuipa P. K., Jonathan E. Characterization and utilization of acid tar waste from crude benzol processing for environmental sustainability. IOSR Journal of Environmental Science, Toxicology and Food Technology. 2014. 8(1). 16-21.

Frolov A. F., Titova T. S., Karpova I. V., Denisova T. L. About the composition of acid tars in the sulfuric acid treatment of petroleum oils. Chemistry and technology of fuels and oils. 1985. 6. 37-38.

Khromyak U. Tarnavsky A. The impact of the Zbyranka LUE on the environment and the basic principles of creation of a new landfill. Scientific Bulletin of UNFU. 2016. 227-232. [in Ukrainian]

Zhebryakov E. V., Zorin A. D., Zanozina V. F., Gushchina, E. A. Identification of Water-Soluble Sulfonic Acids Isolated from Acid Tars by Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry. Journal of Analytical Chemistry. 2020. 75(1). 90-94.

Popovych V., Malovanyy M., Prydatko O., Popovych N., Petlovanyi M., Korol K., Lyn A., Bosak P., Korolova O. Technogenic impact of acid tar storage ponds on the environment: a case study from Lviv, Ukraine. Ecologia Balkanica. 2021. 13(1). 35-44.

Jelinek R., Kordik J., Slaninka I., Mikusova J. Monitoring the impact of the acid tars lagoons arising from the former petrochemical industry in the Central Slovakia. SGEM International Multidisciplinary Scientific GeoConference EXPO Proceedings. 2019. 19(5.2). 547-556.

Popovych V., Stepova K., Prydatko O. Environmental hazard of Novoyavorivsk municipal landfill. MATEC Web of Conferences. 2018. 247. 00025.

Ivashina V. V. Budyonny O. P. Modern methods of oil refining waste disposal - acid tars and oil sludges. Modern technologies in industrial production: materials of the scientific and technical conference of teachers, staff, graduate students and students of the Faculty of Technical Systems and Energy Efficient Technologies (Sumy). 2011. 3. 51-52.

Ollerová H., Samešová D. Revitalization of gudrons lanill with the emphasis on the choice of plant species. Studia Oecologica. Zvolen: Technická Univerzita vo Zvolene. 2017. 75.

Zorin A. D., Karataev E. N., Zanozina V. F., Knyazev A. V., Zhebryakov E. V. Thin-film cracking of acid tars. Petroleum Chemistry. 2012. 52(4). 245-252.

Leonard S. A., Stegemann, J. A. Stabilization/solidification of acid tars. Journal of Environmental Science and Health. Part A. 2010. 45(8). 978-991.

Nikitchenko Yu. S. Obtaining surfactants on the basis of secondary raw materials for waste processing. Eastern European Journal of Advanced Technology. 2014. 4 (10). 26-30.