Praxair has entered into a long-term agreement with North West Redwater Partnership (NWR) to build, own and operate an air separation facility at NWRs Sturgeon refinery near Edmonton, Alberta, officials said on Monday.
The new air separation plant will be able to produce 2,000 tpd of oxygen and associated volumes of nitrogen and merchant argon. The plant is scheduled to start up in 2016 and will be Praxairs third world-scale plant in the province.
Praxair has been supporting this project for several years and we are pleased to continue our participation as it moves into the construction and operating phases, said Matt White, president of Praxair Canada. Our extensive experience in both Alberta and supporting refining operations globally enables us to play an important role in NWRs ongoing growth.
The NWR gasification process will consume oxygen to produce hydrogen, which is used to upgrade bitumen into diesel and other higher value hydrocarbon products. Initially, the refinery will convert 50,000 bpd of bitumen, supplied by the Alberta Petroleum Marketing Commission (75%) and Canadian Natural Resources Ltd (25%).
This refinery will be the first built in Alberta in over 30 years.
"Praxair will be a key partner in the start-up of this new project," said Larry Vadori, senior vice president at NWR. "The high reliability of supply and operational efficiencies that Praxair offers will be critical factors in our continued success.