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South America

10.01.2011  |  Meche, Helen,  Hydrocarbon Processing Staff, Houston, TX

Keywords: [construction] [engineering] [refinery] [FEED] [polymers] [acrylic acid] [petrochemicals]

Foster Wheeler’s Global Engineering and Construction Group has been released to perform the second phase scope for an existing contract with Ecopetrol S.A. for modernization of the refinery in Barrancabermeja (PMRB), Colombia. This release includes additional project management consultancy (PMC) and front-end engineering design (FEED), detailed engineering for the crude unit revamps, assisting Ecopetrol in the selection process for engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contracts, as well as control and supervision of the EPC and construction contractors.

The second phase of the PMRB will add heavy-crude processing capability to take advantage of the available domestic heavy sour crudes, and it will provide a processing configuration to meet the Colombian clean-fuels product specifications. This refinery upgrade will eliminate fuel-oil production and increase overall profitability.

BASF will invest in a world-scale production site for acrylic acid, butyl acrylate and superabsorbent polymers (SAPs) in Camaçari, Bahia, Brazil. It will reportedly be the first acrylic acid and superabsorbents plant in South America. With an investment volume of more than €500 million, it is the largest investment in BASF’s century-long history in South America.

In addition, BASF will start to produce 2-ethyl-hexyl acrylate in its existing chemical complex in Guaratinguetá, São Paulo. This will be the first plant for this product in South America.

Construction of the new acrylic-acid complex will start in 2011, with production expected to begin in the fourth quarter of 2014. Production for 2-ethyl-hexyl acrylate in Guaratinguetá is expected to start in 2015 on the basis of acrylic acid produced in Camaçari.  HP

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