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Middle East

08.01.2011  |  Meche, Helen,  Hydrocarbon Processing Staff, Houston, TX

Keywords: [construction] [refinery] [diesel] [FEED] [fuels] [petrochemicals] [methanol] [fluid catalytic cracker] [pumping systems]

A grassroots diesel hydrotreater unit (Prime-D), licensed by Axens, was successfully put into production at Saudi Aramco’s Ras Tanura refinery. The 105,000-bpsd unit—reportedly one of the world’s largest—produced ultra-low-sulfur diesel (ULSD) containing less than 10 ppm of sulfur.

Axens’ designed Prime-D unit uses HR 600 series catalyst and EquiFlow reactor internals, enabling the 550,000-bpsd Ras Tanura refinery to comply with the highest environmental standards.


Grimley Smith Associates Ltd. (GSA Ltd.), consultant process engineers in North Lincolnshire, UK, has a contract to engineer, procure and construct site utilities at an existing refinery in Basra, Iraq. The South Refineries Co. (SRC) of Iraq, part of the Iraqi Ministry of Oil, awarded GSA the approximately $50 million contract with an operable letter of credit in May 2011.

The turnkey project is to upgrade the refinery site utilities over a two-year period. GSA has taken on the role as turnkey contractor and will undertake all aspects of the design, procurement and project management, while working with an Iraqi construction company to deliver the project at the site. The construction period is anticipated to be six months.


Foster Wheeler SOFCON, an unincorporated consortium between a subsidiary of Foster Wheeler’s Engineering and Construction Group and A. Al-Saihati, A. Fattani & O. Al-Othman Consulting Engineering Co. (SOFCON) has been awarded a contract by Saudi Arabian Oil Co. (Saudi Aramco) for the front-end engineering and design (FEED) and project management services for the Clean Transportation Fuels Project at the Riyadh Refinery, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The company expects to receive the main release of work in the third quarter of 2011.

The company’s FEED scope includes new isomerization, naphtha splitting and sulfur guard-bed units, as well as the addition of new equipment, including a diesel hydrotreater reactor, in existing units. The FEED also includes the debottlenecking of the hydrocracker and gas concentration units, and replacement of crude and vacuum distillation tower internals.


Saudi Arabian Oil Co. (Saudi Aramco) and ITT Corp. have signed a comprehensive seven-year strategic partnership agreement for ITT to provide products and services to the world’s largest oil producer for oil, gas and petrochemical projects in Saudi Arabia and internationally. Under this agreement, which comes into effect immediately, ITT and its partner Aswad Group will provide products and services through ITT Saudi Co. Ltd., ITT’s local manufacturing and service operation, located in Dammam Second Industrial City.

ITT Saudi will provide professional expertise to support startup and commissioning of all types of pumping systems. It will also provide expert aftermarket services to support Saudi Aramco’s operations.


Davy Process Technology and Johnson Matthey Catalysts (JM) have announced the startup, process performance test and plant acceptance of the 3,600-metric tpd EMethanex methanol plant, located in Damietta, Egypt. The plant has met all the design requirements for production rate, product quality and environmental emissions, and its success is due to the excellent teamwork and cooperation between Davy and JM as technology licensors and catalyst suppliers, EMethanex, the owner and operator, and Techint Compagnia Tecnica Internazionale, the EPC contractor who had overall responsibility for delivering a fully commissioned and operational methanol unit.

The plant uses the Davy/JM combined reforming technology, whereby the natural gas feed is converted to synthesis gas by a combination of steam methane reforming and oxygen-blown auto thermal reforming. The advanced methanol synthesis technology used by the plant is jointly developed and marketed by Davy and JM.


South Refineries Co. (SRC), a subsidiary of the Iraqi Ministry of Oil, awarded Axens the basic engineering design and license contracts for constructing the new refinery in Maissan, Iraq. Axens will supply a naphtha hydrotreater—35,100 bpsd; a CCR reformer (Octanizing) for gasoline production—24,500 bpsd; a vacuum gasoil (VGO) hydrotreater—56,300 bpsd—producing a moderate sulfur feedstock for the fluid catalytic cracker (FCC); a deasphalted oil hydrotreater based on Hyvahl technology—27,600 bpsd; a saturated liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) treatment unit (Sulfrex)—278,000 metric tpy; and an unsaturated LPG treatment (Sulfrex)—399,400 metric tpy.

The refinery will have a capacity of 150,000 bpsd and will deliver high-quality products mainly for the domestic market.  HP



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