2002 Winner: Innovation In Oil Sands Research Sponsored By Syncrude Canada Ltd.
Oil Sands Research Leads To Promising Solutions
Dr. Keng Chung is a renowned senior researcher with a broad perspective on oilsands operations gained through his informal oil sands research network. Dr. Chung investigates the impact of front-end operations on subsequent processes, such as the fouling and corrosion problem encountered in various upgrading process units.
To address the problem, he was instrumental in securing Alberta Energy sponsorship for a project to map the distribution of fine solids in oilsands bitumen-derived streams. This work has resulted in the creation of an information database available to all oilsands operations to improve and trouble-shoot their processes. This approach has led to new techniques capable of diagnosing many of the complex problems encountered in today’s oilsands operations.
For example, bitumen has never reached its full potential as a hydrocarbon feedstock because its molecular structure has never been fully understood. Dr. Chung’s guidance and foresight brought together a diverse group of researchers that ultimately led to a more complete understanding of bitumen. The information derived from this work has identified new possibilities for bitumen upgrading, opening up the potential for a variety of value-added products.
Dr. Chung has also made significant contributions with his work on sulphur emissions from the fluid coking process. With more than 60 publications on oilsands processes in scientific journals, Dr. Chung’s continuing bitumen and oil research is contributing not only to the successes of Alberta’s energy industry, but is also securing Canada’s energy future itself.