Resume of James J. Colyar

Colyar Consultants


  • Technical consultant in the petroleum refining technology field
  • Chemical engineer (BS / MS / MBA) with over 40 years work experience,
  • Work history encompasses 25 years in industry (15 years as a manager), and 18 years as a consultant
  • Expertise in heavy oil upgrading and conversion, international reputation
  • Significant experience in technical/economic configurational studies, technology evaluation, and process modeling
  • Excellent verbal, written and computer skills


2/02 – Present           Colyar Consultants                                                             President

Voluntarily began independent technical consulting career in March 2002 after nearly 25 years in the process development/commercialization field.  As a consultant, I have used my expertise to help clients evaluate and scale-up new heavy oil upgrading processes, optimize existing conversion/upgrading processes, develop overall heavy oil Upgrader configurations, develop a deeper understanding of conversion/upgrading mechanisms through performance/yields models, and improve profitability for existing commercial Upgraders.

Since 2002, I have contracted with dozens of firms, primarily in the U.S. and Canada.  Performed studies and developed reports on the following subjects:

  • Kinetic modelling of complex heavy oil and coal liquefaction processes with the objective of identifying process mechanisms and critical parameters.  This has led to a strong basis for scale-up and optimization and accurate estimation of industrial performance.
  • Technical / economic evaluations of new heavy oil conversion and upgrading technologies
  • Estimation of overall heavy oil conversion-based upgrader yields, capital and operating costs and profitability
  • Developed methodology for the market value of new synthetic crude oils based on existing products and issues concerning critical analytical inspections.
  • Technical and marketing study to determine the role of heavy oil upgrading in meeting the demand for new low sulfur marine fuel oils
  • Provided expert advice to investment firms relative to new heavy oil conversion and upgrading technologies


9/81 – 2/02                 Axens North America, Inc                         Manager of Technology

Responsible for the research and technical marketing of Axens bottom-of-the-barrel technologies.  Accomplishments include licensing of four heavy oil conversion plants with resulting revenues in excess of $30MM.  Plants were successfully started-up, met process guarantees and confirmed laboratory data and process scale-up.  Also was instrumental in the process development, commercialization and scale-up of a new VGO hydrocracking process.  R&D responsibilities included management of laboratory programs, reporting and publication of results.  Responsible for the development of research plans, competitive analyses, proposals, budget and project management.  Research findings resulted in successful sales of process licenses, significantly impacting overall company revenues and profitability.

Technical marketing responsibilities included the development of commercial plant proposals, refinery configuration studies and technology presentations to clients. Responsible for the development of process guarantees and the design bases for commercial plants.  Also was involved in commercial plant technical support, start-up and optimization studies.

6/77 – 9/81           COGAS Development Co.                          Associate Research Engineer

Process engineer involved in the development and demonstration of a combined coal pyrolysis/gasification process.  Responsible for commercial case study preparation and process computer simulation. Developed computer models used for material balance simulation, equipment sizing, performance evaluation and dynamic response studies.  

MBA, Rider University, Lawrenceville, NJ  
MS Chemical Engineering, University of Pennsylvania, Phila., PA
BS Chemical Engineering, Drexel University, Phila., PA 


Publications: Author of over 30 papers on the heavy oil conversion and upgrading, R&D studies, commercialization successes and fluidized‑bed technology.    Created comprehensive report on new and developing heavy oil conversion processes which has purchased by many worldwide major oil refining firms.

Patents: Sixteen U.S. patents awarded.  Latest patent award in 2019.  Several patent applications are currently under development.  Awarded patents in the following broad areas: reactor design/optimization (3), coal liquefaction (1), process integration (6), process optimization (3), and greenhouse gas reduction (3).