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Asia Pacific

05.01.2012  |  Meche, Helen,  Hydrocarbon Processing Staff, Houston, TX

Keywords: [construction] [engineering] [petrochemicals] [refinery] [polymers] [LPG] [SNG] [natural gas] [catalysts]

Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. has a contract from Solvay for a major, specialty polymers production plant to be built at Solvay’s industrial site in Changshu, Jiangsu, China.

Officials estimate the contract value to be approximately $9 million. Jacobs is executing the engineering, procurement and construction management services contract from its Shanghai operations in China.

Solvay is investing approximately $160 million into this plant, which will produce its products SOLEF PVDF and TECNOFLON FKM, as well as its essential VF2 monomer. The plant is scheduled to become operational in the first quarter of 2014, and is expected to significantly boost Solvay’s global production capacity for these specialty polymers.


PETRONAS and BASF are moving forward with the previously announced €1-billion investment that will expand their partnership in Malaysia, involving projects at their existing venture in Kuantan and at a new site within PETRONAS’ proposed Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development (RAPID) complex in Pengerang, Johor. These projects are to be implemented between 2015 and 2018.

The two partners have entered into a heads of agreement (HOA) for developing the new project in Pengerang. Under HOA terms, the partners have agreed to form a new entity (BASF 60%; PETRONAS 40%) to jointly own, develop, construct and operate production facilities for isononanol, highly reactive polyisobutylene, non-ionic surfactants, methanesulfonic acid and plants for precursor materials. These world-scale facilities will become an integral part of PETRONAS’ RAPID project.

PETRONAS, through its subsidiary PETRONAS Chemicals Group Bhd, and BASF, are also making progress with the feasibility study to expand the operation of BASF PETRONAS Chemicals Sdn Bhd in Kuantan. The two partners are considering the expansion of their C3 value chain with a new plant for superabsorbent polymers, as well as the expansion of the production capacity of their existing glacial acrylic-acid unit.


Stamicarbon, the licensing and IP center of Maire Tecnimont S.p.A., has signed license and process design and services agreements with China Chengda Engineering Co. (CHENGDA) and China National Plant Import and Export Corp. (COMPLANT), for a urea melt and urea granulation plant for the Shahjalal Fertilizer Project in Bangladesh.

The project has been planned for more than 10 years, however, the Bangladesh government has now decided to engage in the project with the support of the Chinese government. The plant will be operated by BCIC as representative from the Bangladeshi government, but will mainly be financed by the Chinese government. It will be located adjacent to the existing Natural Gas Fertilizer Factory Ltd. at Fenchuganj, Sylhet, Bangladesh.

The urea plant synthesis and granulation will have a capacity of 1,760 metric tpd and will use Stamicarbon’s Urea2000Plus Technology, featuring a Pool Reactor, minimum equipment and minimum plant height. The granulation plant will be using Stamicarbon’s Fluid Bed Granulation technology. Startup is planned in 2015.

Stamicarbon will deliver the process design package, the training, pre-commissioning and startup services. CHENGDA is responsible for the basic and detailed engineering, plus procurement. COMPLANT is responsible for the construction and commissioning, although partly executed by CHENGDA.


Chemtura Corp. held a groundbreaking ceremony for its new, multipurpose manufacturing facility in the Nantong Economic and Technological Development Area to support its growth strategy in China and the greater Asia-Pacific region.

The Nantong facility, first announced in June 2011, will be operational within the next two years, with four production units supporting Chemtura’s Industrial Performance Products segment’s petroleum additives and urethanes businesses, with the first production unit expected to be operational in the fourth-quarter 2013. There also are plans to manufacture additional products in future phases.

The state-of-the-art facility will include production lines, administrative and maintenance buildings, as well as utilities, a centralized control room and quality control labs.


LANXESS will break ground for its new neodymium polybutadiene rubber (Nd-PBR) plant in Singapore on September 11, 2012. The company plans to invest roughly €200 million in a 140,000 metric-tpy facility in Jurong Island Chemical Park. The facility will reportedly be the largest of its kind in the world and serve the growing market for “Green Tires,” especially in Asia. About 100 jobs will be created. The plant is expected to start up in the first half of 2015.

Engineering work has advanced considerably since June 2011, when the company announced it had selected Singapore as the site for the new plant. Petrochemical Corp. of Singapore (Private) Ltd. (PCS) has agreed on a long-term supply of butadiene to LANXESS. Butadiene is the raw material LANXESS needs to produce Nd-PBR. PCS is building a new butadiene extraction unit and associated infrastructure necessary to supply the raw material.


Essar Oil Ltd. has commissioned a new hydrogen manufacturing unit with an installed capacity to generate 130,000 Nm3/hr hydrogen gas, making it one of the largest hydrogen manufacturing units in the world. The unit is unique because of the installation of a Haldor Topsøe exchange reformer (HTER) in parallel with the conventional steam methane reformer.

The hydrogen manufacturing unit is designed to operate on six feedstock options, including natural gas, saturated refinery fuel gas, saturated liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), hydrotreated naphtha, sweet stabilized naphtha, a blend of saturated LPG and hydrotreated naphtha.

The agreement for supply of the know-how and process package was signed between Haldor Topsøe and Essar Oil Vadinar Ltd. in October 2007. Topsøe’s scope included license, basic engineering, supply of the HTER tube bundle and Topsøe catalysts for three 130,000 Nm3/hr hydrogen plants. Essar plans to start work on the second hydrogen plant soon.


JGC Corp. has been awarded a contract from PETRONAS for the front-end engineering design (FEED) work and early works of engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning for the PETRONAS LNG Train 9 Project which is located in Bintulu, Sarawak, Malaysia

The contract, which adopts a dual-FEED competition scheme, will increase the existing LNG plant facilities with an additional capacity of 3.6 million tpy. The FEED is planned to be completed in the fourth-quarter 2012.


Linde Group has been selected to supply air gases to chemicals producer Dahua Group on Songmu Island in Dalian, Northeast China. Linde will be investing around €70 million in the project. An agreement outlining the terms of the deal was signed by both parties. Under agreement terms, Linde acquires the customer’s two existing air-separation units (ASUs) in Dalian, and will operate these. In addition, Linde’s Engineering Division will build a new ASU onsite with a production capacity of 38,000 Nm3/h.

Scheduled to go onstream in 2014, the new ASU will replace the two older plants, also meeting rising demand for gaseous oxygen at Dahua’s operations. The new arrangement gives the customer a much greater degree of reliability in its gas supply. The new ASU will also produce surplus liquid gases for the regional market.

As part of the contract agreement, the upgraded gas-production facility will be jointly managed by a newly formed 50/50 joint-venture gases company between Linde and Dahua. Linde-Dahua (Dalian) Gases Co., Ltd. will also offer industrial gaseous and liquid products, and provide relevant engineering services to neighboring industrial hubs.


The new coal to substitute natural gas (SNG) plant for the Yinan SNG Project will convert locally mined sub-bituminous coal into synthetic natural gas (SNG) with the aim of reducing imports of natural gas for power and heat generation. In its first stage of completion, the plant is to produce around 2 billion Nm3/yr of SNG. The customer is the power provider CPI Xinjiang Energy Co. Ltd., a subsidiary of China Power Investment Corp., one of the five biggest power generators in China. The plant is scheduled to go online by the end of 2014.

Haldor Topsøe will supply license, engineering design, catalyst and services. As licensor, it will use its TREMP technology for the methanation section. The produced SNG will meet the stringent requirements of the pipeline operators, and will be delivered through existing natural-gas lines.


Axens has created Axens South East Asia Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary that is 100% owned by Axens. This new subsidiary located in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, will take direct responsibility for catalysts and adsorbents sales in South-East Asia, as well as in Australia and New Zealand.

In addition, Axens South East Asia Sdn Bhd will provide the base for a technical assistance hub for users of Axens’ technologies and products in Asia in coordination with the local subsidiaries in this part of the world.


Technip has a front-end engineering design contract for PETRONAS’ proposed Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development (RAPID) project located in the state of Johor, Malaysia. RAPID aims at building a world-scale integrated refinery and petrochemical complex to answer the growing need for specialty chemicals, and to meet the demand for petroleum and commodity petrochemical products in the Asia-Pacific region by 2016.

The proposed refinery will have a capacity of 300,000 bpsd and will supply naphtha and liquid petroleum gas feedstock for the RAPID petrochemical complex, as well as produce gasoline and diesel that meet European specifications.

The petrochemical units, on the other hand, will enhance the value of the olefinic streams coming from the RAPID steam cracker by producing various merchant-grade petrochemical products, such as polyethylene, polypropylene, synthetic rubbers and more. The contract is scheduled for completion in the second semester of 2013.


INEOS Technologies has licensed the Innovene polypropylene (PP) process to China Shenhua, Coal to Liquid and Chemical, Beijing Engineering Co., for the manufacture of polypropylene resins including homopolymers, random copolymers and impact copolymers. The 300-kiloton/yr plant, located in Yulin City, Shaanxi province, will serve the rapidly growing Chinese PP market.

China Shenhua is a major coal chemical producer in China. It was reportedly the first company to commercialize the MTO (methanol-to-olefins) process. This Innovene PP plant will be part of China Shenhua’s second MTO complex.


The Shaw Group Inc. has been awarded contracts to provide a process-design package and technology license for the addition of a 30,000-bpd deep catalytic-cracking (DCC) unit to IRPC’s 215,000-bpd refinery in Rayong, Thailand. The upgrade project will maximize the production of polymer-grade propylene and recovery of polymer-grade ethylene to be used as feedstock for petrochemical derivative units at the same site.

Shaw will also function as the super licensor for four additional supporting technologies provided by Axens. As super licensor, Shaw has single-point responsibility for execution and performance guarantees for these technologies.

Shaw is the exclusive licensed provider of DCC technology outside of China, and together with the technology’s developer, Sinopec Research Institute of Petroleum Processing in the People’s Republic of China, has licensed a total of 16 DCC units.


Total has signed a comprehensive memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Kuwait Petroleum International (KPI) and Petrochemicals Industries Co. (PIC), two wholly owned subsidiaries of Kuwait Petroleum Corp. The MOU relates to a targeted participation in the Zhanjiang project in China. This project consists of the planned development of a large-size 300,000-bpd full-conversion refinery integrated with petrochemicals and marketing, in partnership with Sinopec.

The proposed refining and petrochemicals platform will be designed to process Kuwaiti crude as feedstock and to produce high-quality refined and petrochemical products.


Synthesis Energy Systems, Inc. is undertaking a study for its strategic partner, Coalworks Ltd., to determine the potential for additional cost savings resulting from the use of high-pressure U-GAS gasifiers at Coalworks’ planned coal-to-liquids plant in Oaklands, New South Wales, Australia. The agreement follows on the companies’ 2009 strategic alliance for development of the Oaklands facility.


Celanese Corp. has received the key government approvals necessary to proceed with its previously announced plans to modify and enhance its existing integrated acetyl facility at the Nanjing Chemical Industrial Park to produce ethanol for industrial uses.

The unit, based on Celanese TCX ethanol process technology, is expected to start up in mid-2013. The new ethanol production is expected to increase the facility’s overall profitability by enhancing the mix of products manufactured with the current capacity of certain critical raw materials available at the site. Total investment for the project is expected to be a fraction of the required capital for a greenfield facility.

Based upon continued advancements to its TCX ethanol process technology, the company now expects to have approximately 30 to 40% additional ethanol-production capacity than the originally announced 200,000 tons with no increase in the capital investment for the modification and enhancement.

A subsidiary of Foster Wheeler AG’s Global Engineering and Construction Group has been awarded a contract by PT Pertamina (Persero) to provide project management consultancy services for the Residue Fluid Catalytic-Cracker (RFCC) Project at the Cilacap refinery, on the island of Java, Indonesia. Foster Wheeler will manage the engineering, procurement and construction contractor on behalf of Pertamina.

The RFCC project is intended to build a 62,000-bpd RCC Complex, which includes a RFCC, a new liquefied petroleum gas Merox unit (Merox is a trademark of UOP LLC) along with propylene-recovery and gasoline-hydrotreating units. The addition of an RFCC unit should enable the refinery to increase fuel production, especially fuel-air high-octane fuels intended to meet European Union EURO IV-quality specifications. Production of liquid petroleum gases is also expected to be increased by 350,000 tpy, and the refinery also plans to produce in excess of 140,000 tpy of propylene. The upgrade is expected to be completed in 2014. HP



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