Heavy oil requires more processing than lighter crudes. Not all refineries are equipped to process it. Although 45% of all refineries could be upgraded to process heavy crude, only about 25% can do so today, and most of those are in the US, as the US refines more heavy oil than anyone else.

In refineries, cokers are essential to converting the heaviest fraction (residue) of crude oil to value added products. With the trend clearly moving to heavier crude slates there is a growing need to increase coking capacity.

PetroBeam can significantly reduce the capital intensity of refining heavy oil. By treating the feedstock leaving the primary distillation column with the PetroBeam process, a refinery could expand its coking capacity by approximately 30% at a capital cost of $3,000 per bbl/d.