Engineers revieiwng charts and Specialty Hydroprocessing Nebula

Specialty hydroprocessing (Nebula®)  

Nebula® bulk metal hydroprocessing catalyst delivers up to two times the activity of traditional hydroprocessing catalysts. Jointly developed by ExxonMobil and Albemarle Corporation, pioneering Nebula catalyst technology provides exceptional hydrogenation power, increasing hydrodesulfurization (HDS), hydrodenitrogenation (HDN) and aromatic saturation activity.

Key benefits

  • High performance monitor

    • Up to two times more active than conventional catalysts
    • Stacked-bed maximizes total system performance
    • High yield and product quality

  • High value with award ribbon

    • Upgrades difficult feeds to high-value products
    • Increases production of on-spec distillate products
    • Increases throughput

  • Low operating cost icon

    • Improved margins after short payback period
    • Low investment to meet regulatory requirements
    • Can be a drop-in solution for existing units

Hydroprocessing value  

Refiners use Nebula catalyst technology to upgrade difficult feeds to diesel and other high-value products, as well as to increase production volumes of on-spec distillate products. For ultra-low sulfur diesel, Nebula catalyst technology lets refiners enjoy small capital investment to meet regulatory requirements. For LCO hydrocracker, the catalyst results in increased throughput and LCO to diesel VGO hydrocracking and improved yield and product quality.

hydropressing graph, molecule, and payback icons

Proven performance  

  • Outstanding market acceptance: 60 individual users with over 5,000 MT sold
  • Exceptional customer loyalty: 85 to 90 percent repeat customers and more than one new customer every two months


Ultra-high activity  

Nebula bulk metal catalysts have proven to be up to two times more active than conventional supported catalysts. Due to its high activity, and pairing with Albemarle’s STAX® technology, Nebula catalyst can be a drop-in solution for existing units. Nebula has more active sites per unit catalyst volume, and usually accounts for 15-35 percent of the reactor load.


LGO and CGO cycle comparison graph

Featured resources

View highlighted news, events, technical papers and case studies below. To see our full collection of resources, browse our Library.
  • ExxonMobil Chemical play button icon

    Specialty hydroprocessing Celestia™ catalyst

    Learn how Celestia ultra-high activity, bulk metal hydroprocessing catalyst can help increase your operation’s performance and flexibility.

    Watch the video
  • ExxonMobil Chemical Library icon

    Celestia: Increased flexibility and profitability from new hydroprocessing catalyst

    A new bulk metal catalyst enables upgrading more difficult feeds and delivering products to meet environmental standards and higher quality levels.

    Read more
  • ExxonMobil Chemical play button icon

    A Particle of Difference

    How ExxonMobil Catalysts and Technology Licensing solves shared challenges through expertise, specialty catalysts, technology licensing and collaboration.

    Watch the video
  • ExxonMobil Chemical Library icon

    ExxonMobil Catalysts and Technology Licensing – summary of technologies offered

    Learn about the cutting-edge, proprietary catalysts and advantaged process technologies that ExxonMobil provides for refining, gas and chemical needs.

    Read more
Don’t see what you’re looking for? Check out Quick links to explore additional content.
Loading