Transporting Bitumen in its Natural State


The Traditional Process

Bitumen is traditionally mixed with a liquid called diluent to create a product called diluted bitumen (dilbit).

Once dilbit reaches the refineries, the diluent is extracted from the dilbit. Only the bitumen (65% of a barrel of dilbit) is used by the refineries and turned into valuable products, such as asphalt and low-sulphur diesel.


The BitCrude™ Process


The BitCrude™ Process:
Transporting Bitumen in its Natural State

The BitCrude™ Process is an innovative way to safely move 100% bitumen to local and international markets in its natural state, as a solid.   

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Step 1
Creating a Safe Bitumen

Step 1 of the BitCrude™ process is to remove diluent from dilbit, creating a product, BitCrude™, that is safe and non-toxic to marine life.  

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Step 2
Moving it Safely & Efficiently

Step 2 of the BitCrude™ process is to safely transport the final product in custom containers as a solid anywhere in the world, using existing rail and vessel infrastructure.


Our partner, Melius Energy, uses the BitCrude™ Process to produce, transport, and market a solid bitumen product called True Crude™. For more information about Melius Energy, please visit


How Does BitCrude™ Work?


How BitCrude™ Works

Bitcrude is a proprietary process that uses a first-of-its-kind electric DRU (diluent recovery unit) to create a solid form of crude oil that is safe for transport. The process removes all additives, including diluent, from diluted bitumen, leaving a 100% pure crude that is non-toxic and non-dangerous to transport.


In Canada, diluted bitumen (dilbit) is pumped into the BitCrude™ Diluent Recovery Unit (DRU).


Within the DRU, diluent is extracted from the dilbit. The diluent is recovered and sold back to the market for re-use in Canada.


The final product is a proprietary undiluted bitumen, a solid, that is safe for the environment and for transport. When heated, the solid, undiluted bitumen is poured into custom containers.


The undiluted bitumen cools and solidifies. It is now safe for transport.


The containers are transported using existing infrastructure (rail and vessel) to local and overseas markets.


At the final destination, the solid bitumen is heated and converted back into a liquid. It is now ready to be refined.


Bitumen is turned into valuable products such as asphalt, low sulphur diesel, and other everyday consumer goods.


The custom shipping containers are returned to Canada for re-use.


The BitCrude™ Diluent Recovery Unit

The BitCrude™ Diluent Recovery Unit (DRU) is the world’ first electrical diluent recovery unit, and is designed to be safe, eco-efficient, and economical. With its smart and modern design, the BitCrude™ DRU efficiently removes diluent from dilbit, and produces a solid bitumen for transport. 


1. Electrical

Using our proprietary technology, the BitCrude™ DRU is the world’s first and only DRU that is powered by electricity, rather than fossil fuel combustion.


2. ModulaR

The BitCrude™ DRU units are designed as smaller, individual units, that can independently process dilbit into solid, undiluted bitumen. The modular design allows for improved efficiency and reduced downtime for maintenance.


3. Scalable

Because the BitCrude™ DRU is modular, we can start small and easily increase capacity as needed.


4. Stackable

BitCrude™ DRU units are stackable, meaning reduced land requirements for our facilities.


5. No Additives or Chemicals

The Bitcrude™ process does not use additives or chemicals, which creates a safer facility and reduces environmental impact.


Safety Advantages of BitCrude™


Safety Advantages

BitCrude™ solid bitumen is the first crude oil that is safe for marine-life and is designated a non-dangerous good for transport.  It is non-toxic and floats in both sea and fresh water.  Also, because the final product is a solid, it does not disperse in water and can be easily recovered in the case of an accident. 














BitCrude™ in the News


Oil-sands crude sails from B.C., sidestepping federal ban

A Canadian law barring oil tankers from the northern coast of British Columbia hasn’t stopped crude from setting sail there.

Two Calgary-based companies, Melius Energy and BitCrude, are exploiting a loophole in the law passed this summer -- by shipping semi-solid bitumen mined from oil sands on a cargo ship rather than in liquid form on an oil tanker. About 130 barrels of bitumen left Prince Rupert, B.C., on Saturday bound for a refinery in China, according to Cal Broder, founder of both companies and chairman of BFH Corp. He declined to name the cargo’s buyer.

> Watch

Melius Energy Ships Bitumen to International Markets From the Port of Prince Rupert

News release: Successful shipment proves the viability of the BitCrude transportation solution that exceeds Canadian regulatory requirements.

Calgary, Alberta, September 25, 2019 – Calgary based Melius Energy has successfully transported bitumen from Edmonton, Alberta to Prince Rupert, British Columbia, continuing to global markets in custom 20-foot shipping containers utilizing intermodal rail and vessel infrastructure. The shipment is the company’s first BitCrude™ transportation process demonstration, proving the ability to move bitumen safely and efficiently, in adherence to Canada’s regulatory framework.    

> Read News Release

Global News - Danielle Smith Podcast

Transporting undiluted bitumen to Global Markets

Guest Andy Popko, Director of Bitcrude and Cal Broder, Chairman and Founder of Bitcrude

> Listen

BitCrude™ – Melius Energy Partnership Creates a New Alternative for Market Access

News release: BitCrude™ process makes it possible to transport undiluted bitumen to global markets

Calgary, Alberta, September 23, 2019 – Calgary based BitCrude and Melius Energy have partnered to use the BitCrude transportation solution to safely and economically transport undiluted bitumen to Global Markets.

> Read News Release

BNN Bloomberg

Power Shift: BitCrude a way to ship crude in semi-solid blobs

Cal Broder, chairman of BFH Corp., discusses his invention that could make crude transport safer and oil spills easier to clean up.

> Watch

Alberta Oil - The Business of Energy

His Invention Could Save the Oil Sands. But Will Anyone Give It a Chance?

With the fruits of his proprietary technology in hand, entrepreneur Cal Broder believes he may hold the cure to the oil sands’ market-access blues

> Read

Calgary Herald - Danielle Smith Opinion

Smith: Bitcrude may be a game-changer in pipeline impasse

To this point, everyone — including me — has been saying that new pipelines are the only real solution to get out of this mess. Now it appears there may be another way.

> Read

Global News - Danielle Smith Podcast

BitCrude – Solid Bitumen

Guests Andy Popko, Director of Bitcrude and Cal Broder, founder and chairman of Bitcrude

> Listen