Fractional Extraction of Heavy Naphtha

Koch Modular Process Systems has extensive experience in process optimization related to extracting components from solutions that are too difficult or cannot be economically separated through distillation. This process is known as liquid-to-liquid extraction (LLE) or solvent extraction (SX).

After client was unsuccessful in achieving project goals during in-house pilot testing, Koch Modular Process Systems was engaged to solve client’s difficult separation involving fractional extraction of heavy naphtha stream.


During initial pilot testing performed by the client utilizing a Rotating Contactor Disc (RDC) Column, client was not able to achieve sufficient theoretical stage to achieve purity specifications.

Client engaged Koch Modular to de-risk and perform pilot testing at its Pilot Plant in Houston, TX to improve their fractional extraction process design and purify their heavy naphtha stream to an aromatic composition containing less than 1% non-aromatics.


Koch Modular’s solution started with using a much more efficient SCHEIBEL Column design.  Via pilot plant testing, a novel solution was developed to recover non-aromatics within specifications.  This included optimizing the number of agitated stages and the impeller designs, plus finding the best column feed location.  Koch modular was able to successfully achieve sufficient theoretical stages to extract non-aromatics and achieve an aromatic product with less than 1%  non-aromatic composition utilizing Scheibel© Column technology.


Following successful pilot testing, Koch Modular designed and delivered a complete commercial scale SCHEIBEL extraction column which continues in successful operation without issue.