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Canadian Mining Journal: OIL SANDS PROCESSING – Shell announces cleaner technology

11/26/2006

CALGARY – SHELL CANADA is talking about its Enhance™ froth treatment technology for bitumen recovery from oil sands. The technology was developed by Shell Canada with the help of CANMET Energy Technology Centre staff at Devon, Alberta.

The Enhance foam treatment process uses high temperature in the paraffinic froth treatment process to remove more sand, fine clay particles and other impurities than conventional processes can remove from oil sands froth. By treating froth at a higher temperature, Shell says it will be able to use smaller equipment, less water and less energy than low-temperature processes. And, the company says, lower energy consumption will result in fewer greenhouse gas emissions. Overall recovery efficiency should improve 10%, as well.

The Shell Enhance technology will be used at the Athabasca Oil Sands Project (www.AlbianSands.ca or www.Shell.ca). Shell and its partners WESTERN OIL SANDS (20%) and CHEVRONTEXACO (20%) have recently approved a $7.3-billion expansion of the Muskeg River mine and bitumen recovery plant.

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