Dense loading has more advantages in comparison with sock loading, which involves catalyst being distributed from a long sock attached to a feed hopper. Sock loading has a tendency to create void spaces which results in flow maldistribution, reduced throughput, and increased pressure drop across the reactor are direct consequences.
Dense loading applies a dense loading machine that equally spreads the catalyst across the reactor by applying centrifugal force.
Dense loading has the following advantages as compared to conventional sock loading;
1. Ability to load more catalyst (10~20%) fixed reactor volume, thus having more catalyst available for reaction in limited space of hydrotreating reactor.
2. Highly improved process fluid distribution over the catalyst that results in controlled hydrotreating reactions.
3. Catalyst is equally distributed with minimum catalyst bed slumpage.
4. Due to lower differential pressure across the catalyst, it will have a longer cycle length.
5. Low operating temperatures due to utilization of maximum amount of the catalyst that results, reduced catalyst deactivation or coking rate per time.
6. Increased performance of the catalysts thus longer cycle length of the catalysts.
7. Due to equal distribution of catalysts or more homogenous catalyst beds, there are fewer chances of channeling and hot spot formation during the run.