HTL Process

Ivanhoe Energy is implementing a multi-faceted strategy to commercialize the Heavy-to-Light (HTL) technology.

  • The Company has been working with a number of consultants (Jacobs, FACTS, CERA ) to develop updated HTL project economics.
  • The Company is sharing the economic drivers and benefits with the global industrial sector through presentations and papers. 
    - Dr. Michael Silverman presented a paper at the Heavy Oil Congress, Scotland, September 12, 2012. Presentation and Paper
    - The Company published a paper in the September issue of Hydrocarbon Processing.
    -  Dr. Michael Silverman presented at the International Refining and Petrochemical Conference, Italy, June 2012.
  • The Company is establishing and developing projects to commercialize the technology through two models.

Field Integrated Model

  • An HTL facility is integrated with production operations.
  • The energy generated in the HTL process supports the steam and power needs of the project.
  • The synthetic crude oil (SCO) created is sold to downstream customers.
  • Ivanhoe benefits from the sale of each barrel of SCO.

Existing Ivanhoe Energy field projects include Tamarack in Canada and Block 20 in Ecuador.

Midstream Model

  • Resource owners deliver heavy oil to a centralized HTL facility.
  • The HTL facility partially upgrades the heavy oil for a fee.
  • There is an additional revenue stream by selling excess power to the electrical grid.
  • The Independent producers in the area benefit from the sale of each barrel of SCO.
  • Ivanhoe assumes no risk on commodity price.

The Company is actively pursuing this midstream model in various regions of the world and has advanced several opportunities in North, Central and South America. The project in Guatemala is an example of a midstream HTL project.

The Republic of Guatemala

On May 9, 2012, Ivanhoe Energy Inc. signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Coban Oil and Gas ("Coban"), to assess the feasibility of building an HTL facility to upgrade heavy crude oil in the Republic of Guatemala. Coban is a company located in Guatemala, owned by a group of professionals with extensive oil and gas experience, and specifically dedicated to this project.

Key Terms of the Memorandum of Understanding with Coban

  • Ivanhoe Energy and Coban will conduct a technical and economic feasibility study to establish the conditions under which the parties can upgrade and improve the native crude of Guatemala, for domestic consumption and international export.
  • This feasibility study will contain all the elements needed to reach an investment decision to support building an HTL facility that will upgrade at least 10,000 barrels per day of crude oil.
  • Once the feasibility work is completed the parties expect to execute a Definitive Agreement to create a joint venture company whose mandate will be to build an HTL facility, licenced for operation in the Republic of Guatemala


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