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Propane Dehydrogenation


CATOFIN® is a globally leading catalyst technology for producing olefins such as propylene, isobutylene, and normal butylene/butadiene. Due to its excellent productivity and high reliability, CATOFIN technology has been chosen for numerous dehydrogenation plants worldwide.

The gap between propylene demand and supply is growing. Over the last decade, the advent of shale gas has changed the olefin market. Cracker operators choose lighter feeds and are producing less propylene; this has led to increased demand for on-purpose propylene production. Propane Dehydrogenation (PDH) is among the fastest growing technologies due to lower costs and greater availability of propane feedstock.

Plants using CATOFIN

Clariant Image CATOFIN References Awards Worldmap 1188x757 202211 EN

Adding customer value

Unique performance benefits you



Robust catalyst with higher selectivity and reliability allow for more output


Superior operability with fast start-up time, in-situ de-coking, and reduced maintenance


Catofin technology allows for large economies of scale and higher returns on investment
up to 110%
of production capacity


up to 98%
on-stream factor


1000+ kta
plant capacities possible


“CATOFIN technology and catalysts were selected based on their excellent resource efficiency and process reliability, which will enable us to realize our sustainable strategy in the coming decades.”
– Rob Ingram, CEO INEOS Europe Group AG (Source: Clariant Media Release Oct 2018)
Clariant Photo CATOFIN HGM Catalysts 570x363 20201124

Continuous innovation

Breaking production barriers

Clariant’s Heat Generating Material (HGM) is an innovative metal-oxide which is specifically designed to significantly increase selectivity and yields of Catofin units. HGM is loaded into the catalyst bed with the catalyst, where it undergoes oxidation and reduction during the operating cycle, producing heat and driving the dehydrogenation reaction.


Your benefits using our HGM innovation:

  • Selectivity improvement up to 3%
  • Increased energy savings
  • Reduced emissions 

High efficiency

Catofin technology and catalysts

The highly efficient CATOFIN process operates at optimum reactor pressure and temperature to maximize catalytic dehydrogenation of propane and isobutane forhigh yields of propylene and isobutylene at low investment and operating costs.

The technology, which uses fixed-bed reactors, is exclusively licensed by our renowned process partner, Lummus Technology, while the tailor-made catalysts are supplied by Clariant.


History of Catofin

Developed by Eugene Houdry in 1942, the Houdry® process for olefin production is one of the earliest petrochemical technologies. Since the 1990s, the Houdry process has been used for the production of propylene by dehydrogenation of propane (Catofin® technology). Recent improvements made by Clariant have helped to boost the competitiveness and reliability of the dehydrogenation processes. 

Learn more about CATOFIN

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November 30, 2022
Clariant's NiSat® 310 catalyst adds polishing touch to Evonik-tkIS HPPO process at propylene oxide plant in China
November 30, 2022
Clariant Catalysts has teamed up with Evonik and thyssenkrupp Industrial Solutions (tkIS) in a major propylene oxide project for one of China’s largest rubber producers. Qixiang Tengda is one of the leading global producers of carbon-four chemical products, such as methyl ethyl ketone and maleic anhydride. Expanding into the carbon-three value chain, the company’s new propylene oxide plant in Zibo city, Shandong province, relies on Evonik-tkIS HPPO technology to convert propylene in the presence of hydrogen peroxide (HP) directly into propylene oxide (PO). The plant will have an annual production capacity of 300,000 tons. more
October 20, 2022
Clariant unveils portfolio for purifying pyrolysis oil derived from mixed plastic waste
October 20, 2022
Driven by its vision to enable a circular economy, Clariant launched an innovative portfolio of flexible, custom solutions for the emerging market of chemical plastics recycling. more
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