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The Biturox® Reactor

The core piece of the Biturox® Process is the unequalled loop reactor. In this perfect air-lift reactor with agitator the thermo-chemical conversion of selected feedstock blends by atmospheric oxygen takes place continuously and under stable conditions. It is thus possible to control all important process parameters (pressure, temperature, flow rates, residence time etc.) with high accuracy. Internal reactor cooling enables exact temperature control. The process runs continuously resulting in a consistent and homogenous finished product quality, preventing short-cuts and fall-back effects.

The Biturox® Technology allows to run the oxidation process both effectively and very softly: Valuable resins are formed and preserved in the multi-stage reaction. Due to control of temperature and pressure, local overheating is prevented and the degradation of organic compounds to coke and the buildup of deposits are minimized.

Features such as safe and automated operation, shortest possible turnaround and minimum maintenance as well as environmental compatibility have made the Biturox® Process the preferred choice for the modern bitumen producer.

Technical Close ups

Reactor Design

The reactor size is designed on the result of pilot tests carried out on feed components provided by customer. In these tests also the parameters for process guarantees are defined. In case of grass-root projects the design can be based on Pörner´s pilot test data base which covers a wide variety of crude sources.

The possible turndown rate for a Biturox® Reactor is maximum 50% of the nominal throughput.

Heat Recovery: Feed Heating / Product Cooling

As the process is exothermic, the product is cooled to storage temperature by recovering the energy from the reaction, heating up the feed stream to the reactor to process starting temperature.

Off-gas treatment

The properties of the off-gas vary depending on the nature of the feed components. The standard solution is to separate hydrocarbons by condensing the off-gas partly in a knock-out drum. The remaining gas stream is forwarded to an incineration and burned at high temperature. The incinerator can be provided with heat recovery for system generation or  hot oil heating (e.g. to be used for tank heating and pipe tracing). Optionally the gas stream can be desulfurised e.g. by washing with caustic soda in a scrubber.


The Biturox® Process is the only process of its kind that is fully compatible with the operating requirements of a modern refinery:

  • The operation of the process is fully automated by DCS and separated safe control system.
  • The plant is run continuously at pre-defined, nearly constant process parameters.
  • The Biturox® Reactor design is minimizing coke build up: thus the plant can be operated continuously over a long period.
  • The change of product grades can be done during continous operation.
  • The Biturox® Reactor system features high operational safety and security.