ASME STS - Thursday, September 21st, 2017 - "Distributed Processing for Fuels and Chemicals"
Vikram Rao, Ph.D
Exec. Dir. - Research Triangle Energy Consortium (RTEC)
Research Triangle Park, NC
The production of fuels and chemicals is usually in large plants, due to the economies of scale. But when the raw material is highly distributed, as is the case with shale oil and gas, biomass and biogas, distributed processing is warranted. It would eliminate transport infrastructure such as long distance pipelines, and would enable monetization of deposits too small to afford pipelines. In the case of gas, these quantities are usually flared. We will discuss recent advances in technology that overcomes the hurdle of economies of scale. Shale oil is particularly burgeoning in the Permian, and pipelines are proving inadequate already. Small distributed refineries are the appropriate solution.
Vikram Rao is the executive director of RTEC, and assumed this position on September 1, 2008. Rao spent 9 years with Halliburton and another 25 with predecessor companies. Most recently, he served as senior vice president and chief technology officer, responsible for Halliburton's technology effort as well as intellectual asset management. He joined a predecessor company in 1974 as a senior research engineer. Dr. Rao advises the non-profit RTI International and venture capitalist Energy Ventures AS, and firms BioLargo Inc., Global Energy Talent Ltd.,. Biota Technology Inc., Melior Innovations Inc. and Eastman Chemicals Company. He is a past Chairman of the North Carolina Mining and Energy Commission. Rao is the author of more than 30 publications and has been awarded 40 United States patents and foreign analogs in fields that include non-ferrous metal refining, alloy formulations, and oil and gas technology. RTI Press released his book "Shale Gas: the Promise and the Peril" in July 2012, and a revised second edition in 2015. Rao earned a doctorate degree and a master's in engineering from Stanford University, and holds a bachelor's degree in engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras in Chennai, India.
ASME meetings are open to all. Membership is encouraged but not required to attend. Professional Development Hour (PDH) certificates will be available to participants at the conclusion of the event.
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