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Chem32 Services – THIOCAT®

What is Thiocat®?

THIOCAT® is a complete sulfiding and activation process for hydroprocessing and hydrocracking catalysts performed at our Orange, Texas plant.

Hydro-processing catalysts are typically supplied in their oxidic form requiring an activation step where the oxides are converted to sulfides. This is traditionally performed in-situ at the refinery using a more demanding protocol using hydrogen, hydrogen sulfide or organic sulfur compounds, that form hydrogen sulfide in the presence of hydrogen.

Potential Problems and Risks

  • Long startup time
  • Risk for run-away exotherms
  • Odor emissions
  • Sour water generation, typically 10% of catalyst weight.
  • Storage space required for chemicals
  • Off-grade storage sometimes required
  • Channeling => incomplete sulfiding
  • Mechanical failures during sulfiding => incomplete sulfiding
  • Potential catalyst damage from reduction
  • Contractors needed for activation using spiked feedstock

The THIOCAT® process resembles an in-situ activation process with one significant difference. At Chem32 the reactor is designed and optimized for only one purpose – sulfiding and complete activation. All of the drawbacks, problems and risks associated with in-situ sulfiding are eliminated.

Issues such as water make, temperature control and optimized sulfiding conditions during the different sulfiding steps are addressed in a flexible way that enables different protocols for different catalysts.

Catalysts are fragile. The THIOCAT® fixed bed processing is gentle and eliminates losses and reduction of particle length resulting in predictable fill volumes. Long processing time guarantees complete sulfiding. Main benefit – the startup is now simple and quick. Bring the feed up to start of run temperature as quickly as the reactor will permit, and you are producing in-spec products.

Sulfided catalyst is shipped in drums or in metal bins holding typically 3,000 lbs. catalyst. Thiocat must be loaded under near inert conditions to eliminate risks for oxidation of the catalyst.

Thiocat CFT (Cracked Feed Tolerant) is available for starting up in the presence of cracked feed.



  • 100% yield – maintained fill volume.
  • Complete sulfiding – extended sulfiding emulating catalyst manufacturers guidelines.
  • Lot sizes of 4,000 to 1,000,000 lbs.
  • Sulfiding CoA’s based on samples taken every 2,000 lbs.
  • ISO 9001-2008 quality certification.
  • Excellent logistics services.
  • Available for a wide variety of hydro-treating and hydro-cracking catalysts.

Our THIOCAT® Pre-activation services are available for hydrotreating and hydrocracking catalysts used to process:

  • Naphtha
  • Kerosene
  • Gasoil
  • Lube oil
  • ULSD
  • Olefins
  • Tail Gas
  • Jet fuel
  • Petrochemical applications

For more information on THIOCAT®, please contact us.