Patent Number: 6,251,290

Title: Method for recovering hydrocarbons from tar sands and oil shales

Abstract: A method for treating hydrocarbonaceous deposits to recover a petroleum-like hydrocarbon portion and a cleaned particulate substrate portion. Hydrocarbonaceous ore containing bitumen and/or kerogen is crushed or otherwise comminuted to the particle size of sand or smaller. The comminuted ore is mixed with water to form a slurry, is heated to between 60.degree. C. and 100.degree. C., and is blended with an oxidant in aqueous solution, preferably hydrogen peroxide. Both free interstitial hydrocarbons and those hydrocarbons bound electrostatically to the surfaces of clay-like particles in the ore are released from the rock substrate in a putative electrophysical reaction in the presence of the oxidant. Some of the released bitumenous and kerogenic compounds are then controllably cleaved by the oxidant in a limited Fenton's reaction to yield organic compounds having lower average molecular weights which are suitable for refining as oil after separation from the process water phase and the residual rock substrate. The water and rock tailings from the process are substantially free of hydrocarbon contamination and are environmentally suitable for landfill disposal.

Inventors: Conaway; Lawrence M. (Niagara Falls, NY)

Assignee: Continuum Environmental, Inc.

International Classification: B01D 21/26 (20060101); B03B 9/02 (20060101); B03B 9/00 (20060101); B09C 1/02 (20060101); B09C 1/08 (20060101); B09C 1/00 (20060101); C10G 53/00 (20060101); C10G 53/02 (20060101); C10G 31/00 (20060101); C10G 27/12 (20060101); C10G 31/10 (20060101); C10G 31/06 (20060101); C10G 27/00 (20060101); C02F 001/72 (); B09C 001/08 ()

Expiration Date: 06/26/2018