Calumet Specialty Products is moving to the front-end
engineering and design (FEED) phase for its proposed 1,400 bpd gas-to-liquids
(GTL) unit at Karns City, Pennsylvania, officials
confirmed on Thursday.
Calumet had commissioned Ventech Engineers, specialists in
modular petroleum processing plants, to design and deliver the
GTL plant utilizing an autothermal reformer (ATR) from Haldor
Topsoe and Fischer-Tropsch technology from Velocys.
Ventech has now completed the plant design and provided a fixed
price quote for the modules. Calumet has confirmed that the project economics look
strong, according to Thursday's statement.
Calumets appointed third-party owners engineer also
finished a thorough review of the technology, as well as
Ventechs GTL design and other intended technology
components. Calumet said it concluded that the
technology is fantastic.
"The project with Calumet will be the
only commercial GTL plant in North America to move in to front
end engineering, other than Sasols project in Louisiana," said Roy
Lipski, CEO of Oxford Catalysts Group, which describes itself
as an innovator for the modular GTL technology.
"If it continues on its current schedule, it will be the first
GTL plant to be operational in North America, and the only
commercial smaller-scale GTL anywhere in the world," he
Calumet now plans to progress with the more detailed
engineering and market analysis for the plant. At the
conclusion of this study, which is expected to last
approximately six months, Calumet says it will be in a
position to decide on proceeding with fabrication.
Production is currently expected to begin in the second half of
(Editor's note: Haldor Topsoes ATR
is an established technology for reforming natural gas into
synthesis gas, a mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide. In the GTL plant,
this synthesis gas will be routed through the Velocys FT
process for conversion into long chain hydrocarbons.
Velocys is a leading developer of microchannel process technology for synthetic fuels
The entire plant is planned to be constructed as
truckable modules at Ventech's fabrication facility in
Pasadena, Texas, and then transported to Calumet's site in
Karns City for rapid installation and interconnection with the
existing refining facility.)