EMI's Refining 101 (Non-Technical)

Training overview
Professional Course
2 days

Course description

EMI's Refining 101 (Non-Technical)

Understand refining and its impact on the energymarketplace as you examine one of the FUNDAMENTAL BUILDING BLOCKS of the petroleum industry.

The refinery is at the center of the petroleum industry, linking all upstream and downstream activities. The refinery provides the key conversions from crude oil and other feedstocks into an array of petroleum products needed by the energy marketplace. This course presents a “low-to-mid-tech” view of the basics of petroleum refining, the processing units that make up typical refining configurations in world markets, and the key factors comprising the economic “drivers” of refinery operations.

There are about 150 operating refineries in the U.S., and their technology, processes, and market significance vary widely. EMI will guide you through each complex refining stage along the way to distill diverse crude grades into a host of refined products from gasoline to residual products.

The key processing operations involved in a refinery will be discussed. We’ll apply just enough “chemistry” to understand the “big picture” of what conversions are taking place and why. You will also learn how value is added in the refinery, and you’ll learn about the derivation of “relative value” among the various crude oil and feedstock choices in the global marketplace.

This course is worth 12 CPE credits and 6 EMI credits.

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Training content

Topics covered include:

  • Crude oil characteristics
  • Oil sands production
  • Refinery types and degrees of complexity
  • Distillation (atmospheric and vacuum)
  • Cracking (thermal and catalytic)
  • Hydrogen treatment
  • Alteration (such as Catalytic Reforming and Isomerization)
  • Unification (such as Alkylation and Polymerization)
  • Gas treatment
  • Hydrogen production
  • Primary product pools
  • Alternative energy sources
  • Blending operations and primary product pools


  • We’ll closely examine the opposite of the cracking process with unification processes (alkylation and polymerization) and alteration processes (catalytic reforming and isomerization).
  • We’ll look at chemical processes such as desalting, hydrotreating, and solvent recovery.
  • We’ll cover specifications as set by the EPA and ASTM, and you’ll understand how refineries have adapted to produce new boutique gasolines and how they will deal with even tougher mandates involving highway diesel.
  • We’ll study the components including: Steam generation, water treatment, pumps, valves, pressure relief systems, and safety procedures.
  • You will understand the impact of how refinery turn-arounds, fires, and unscheduled maintenance can pressure market volatility, price and upset supply balance.
  • We’ll delve into North American and world refinery capacity, utilization, and yields. See how long-term demand might outstrip capacity. Explore the need for global refinery growth.
  • Finally examine some alternative energy sources as well as refinery margins and how the fundamentals drive the overall economic strategy of integrated oil companies.

About DTN

Experience hands-on, interactive and exciting programs that set the standard in energy education. DTN's energy training is the most efficient, effective way to improve your energy industry knowledge and skills. You’ll learn from recognized industry experts who deliver forward-thinking instruction...

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