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1. (WO1991007227) CATALYST REGENERATION PROCESS
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CLAIMS:

1. A process for regenerating a deactivated hydroprocessing catalyst which comprises exposing said catalyst to laser radiation in the presence of an oxidizing gas.

2. The process defined in claim 1, wherein said catalyst is in the form of particles.

3. The process defined in claim 2, wherein said catalyst is agitated during exposure to said laser radiation.

4. The process defined in claim 2, wherein the particle size of said catalyst is 20-50 mesh.

5. The process defined in claim 4, wherein said catalyst is agitated during exposure to said laser radiation.

6. The process defined in claim 1, wherein said oxidizing gas comprises from about 15 to about 25 weight percent of oxygen.

7. The process defined in claim 1, wherein said catalyst is a metal supported on a support material.

8. The process defined in claim 7, wherein said metal is selected from the group comprising iron, chromium, cobalt, nickel, ruthenium, rhodium, palladium, indium, rhenium and platinum.

9. The process defined in claim 8, wherein said support material is selected from the group comprising alumina, silica, silica-alumina, titania, carbon and cerium oxide.

10. The process defined in claim 1, wherein said catalyst is a metal sulphide supported on a support material.

11. The process defined in claim 10, wherein said metal sulphide is selected from molybdenum sulphide and tunsten sulphide.

12. The process defined in claim 11, wherein said metal sulphide is promoted by a compound selected from nickel sulphide and cobalt sulphide.

13. The process defined in claim 12, wherein said support material is selected from the group comprising alumina, silica, silica- alumina, titania and cerium oxide.

14. The process defined in claim 1, wherein said catalyst is selected from the group comprising hydrotreating catalysts, hydrocracking catalysts, gasoline reforming catalysts, catalysts for selective
hydrogenation of pyrolysis gasolines, and catalyst supports used as molecular sieves.

15. The process defined in claim 14, wherein said hydrotreating catalysts are selected from the group comprising hydrodesulphurization catalysts, hydrodenitrogenation catalysts and catalysts for hydrogenation of olefins and aromatics.

16. The process defined in claim 1, wherein said laser radiation is generated from a laser selected from the group comprising C02, Yag and Excimer.

17. The process defined in claim 1, wherein said laser radiation is generated from a C02 laser.

18. The process defined in claim 16, wherein said laser is operated in a mode selected from pulsed, continuous wave and pulsed continuous wave.

19. The process defined in claim 17, wherein said C02 laser is operated in pulsed continuous wave mode.

20. The process defined in claim 1, wherein said catalyst is exposed to said laser radiation for a period of from about 1 microsecond to about 100 milliseconds.

21. The process defined in claim 19, wherein said catalyst is exposed to said laser radiation for a period of from about 100
microseconds to about 10 milliseconds.

22. The process defined in claim 1, wherein said laser radiation comprises a wavelength of from about 200 nm to about 10,000 nm.

23. The process defined in claim 21, wherein said laser radiation comprises a wavelength of from about 1,000 nm to about 10,000 nm.

24. The process defined in claim 16, wherein said laser is operated in a fluence regime of from about 10 to about 1000 J/cm2.

25. The process defined in claim 19, wherein said laser is operated in a fluence regime of from about 20 to about 100 J/cm2.

26. The process defined in claim 16, wherein said laser is operated whereby a beam intensity of from about 10 W/cm2 to about 1 MW/cm2 is achieved.