Mining University Researchers Win the Innovation Contest

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The Committee for Science and Higher School of the Government of St. Petersburg summed up the results of the contest of the best innovative projects in the field of science and higher education in 2021. Its winners in the “Rational use of nature” sphere were representatives of Mining University. Their interdisciplinary research is devoted to reducing the volume of sedimentation when storing petroleum products, as well as utilization of oil sludge and bottom sediments formed at the bottom of tanks to produce synthesis gas.

Today there are several known methods to utilize these environmentally hazardous wastes or to reduce their toxicity. However, all of them are not perfect enough and, besides, are very expensive, which means that business is extremely interested in the emergence of modern, cost-effective ways to recycle them.

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“We propose a technology that will make it possible to produce synthesis gas from low-grade raw materials, namely from sediments and sludge, which can then be delivered to consumers via pipeline transport and sold in the same way as conventional methane. The method suggests the possibility of mixing sediments with other types of feedstock, in particular with high-ash coal, which increases the potential of its implementation in production,” said Radel Sultanbekov, assistant professor at the Department of Transport and Storage of Oil and Gas of Saint Petersburg Mining University.

Plants producing synthesis gas on an industrial scale are now successfully operating in China, Radel added. However, the initial investments required for such start-ups are quite large, and the business cannot do without support from the state here.

In addition to Radel, the scientific team that won the prestigious contest included Ilya Beloglazov, associate professor at the Department of Automation of Technological Processes and Production (project manager), Shamil Islamov, assistant professor at the Department of Oil and Gas Fields Development and Operation, and Sergey Savchenkov, assistant professor at the Department of Metallurgy.

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