skip to main content

SciTech ConnectSciTech Connect

Title: Well-to-Wheels Greenhouse Gas Emission Analysis of High-Octane Fuels with Ethanol Blending: Phase II Analysis with Refinery Investment Options

Higher-octane gasoline can enable increases in an internal combustion engine’s energy efficiency and a vehicle’s fuel economy by allowing an increase in the engine compression ratio and/or by enabling downspeeding and downsizing. Producing high-octane fuel (HOF) with the current level of ethanol blending (E10) could increase the energy and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions intensity of the fuel product from refinery operations. Alternatively, increasing the ethanol blending level in final gasoline products could be a promising solution to HOF production because of the high octane rating and potentially low blended Reid vapor pressure (RVP) of ethanol at 25% and higher of the ethanol blending level by volume. In our previous HOF well-to-wheels (WTW) report (the so-called phase I report of the HOF WTW analysis), we conducted WTW analysis of HOF with different ethanol blending levels (i.e., E10, E25, and E40) and a range of vehicle efficiency gains with detailed petroleum refinery linear programming (LP) modeling by Jacobs Consultancy and showed that the overall WTW GHG emission changes associated with HOFVs were dominated by the positive impact associated with vehicle efficiency gains and ethanol blending levels, while the refining operations to produce gasoline blendstock for oxygenate blending (BOB) for various HOF blendmore » levels had a much smaller impact on WTW GHG emissions (Han et al. 2015). The scope of the previous phase I study, however, was limited to evaluating PADDs 2 and 3 operation changes with various HOF market share scenarios and ethanol blending levels. Also, the study used three typical configuration models of refineries (cracking, light coking, and heavy coking) in each PADD, which may not be representative of the aggregate response of all refineries in each PADD to various ethanol blending levels and HOF market scenarios. Lastly, the phase I study assumed no new refinery expansion in the existing refineries, which limited E10 HOF production to the volume achievable by the cracking refinery configuration. To be able to satisfy large market demands of E10 HOF, that study arbitrarily relaxed the RVP requirements by replacing reformulated gasoline (RFG) RVP requirement of 7 psi in summer with conventional gasoline (CG) RVP requirement of 9 psi in summer. To examine the response by all refineries in major refinery regions, this phase II of the HOF WTW analysis employed regionally aggregated refinery models for the following six regions: PADDs 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 excluding California (CA) and CA separately. Using aggregate refinery models, this phase II study examined the impacts of ethanol blending and HOF market shares on the refinery operations in these six regions. Also, this study included refinery expansion to produce a pre-determined HOF volume with 10% ethanol blending. In particular, this study examined several refinery expansion options using refinery configuration models to investigate a practical refinery response to the increase in E10 HOF market demand.« less
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [2]
  1. Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States). Energy Systems Division
  2. Jacobs Consultancy Inc., Houston, TX (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Bioenergy Technologies Office (EE-3B); USDOE Office of Energy Policy and Systems Analysis (EPSA)
Country of Publication:
United States