KBR announced it was awarded a License and Process Design Package contract for a new olefins production unit using the Advanced Catalytic Olefins (ACO™) technology. This award represents the first license using this innovative technology which catalytically cracks naphtha and other straight run feeds to produce olefins yields which surpass those available from traditional steam cracking technology.
Shaanxi Yanchang Petroleum Yanan Energy and Chemical Co., Ltd. will construct and operate the plant which will be constructed in Luoyang Village, Fucheng Town, Fu County, Shaanxi Province, China. The ACO Converter will have a capacity of approximately 200 kta of olefins (ethylene plus propylene).
ACO technology is developed jointly by KBR and SK Innovation. The keys to this novel technology are the development of a proprietary catalyst and optimization of operating conditions by SK Innovation coupled with the know-how of KBR in the design of fluid bed reactors and olefins production facilities. In October of 2010, SK Innovation successfully started up and operated an ACO Demonstration unit at its facility in Ulsan, South Korea, which met the expectations of both companies.
“This is a historic moment not only for KBR, SK Innovation and Yanchang, but also for the petrochemical industry,” said John Derbyshire, President, KBR Technology. “Our collaboration on this award and the successful startup of the Demonstration plant last year underscores SK Innovation and KBR’s shared commitment to developing innovative technology solutions for customers across the globe.”
The ACO process provides a highly attractive alternative to naphtha steam crackers, offering higher olefins production at lower cost.
“Yan’an Energy & Chemical Company is honored to be the first commercial user for ACO technology in the world,” said Wang Jiaxin, General Manger, Yanchang Petroleum Yan’an Energy & Chemical Company. “We went through a very strict technical comparison and evaluation before we made the decision to choose ACO technology. Compared with the traditional steam cracking technology, we believe ACO has many obvious advantages and is therefore much more suitable for our situation. We will work closely together with KBR and SK Innovation to build a plant that successfully demonstrates the technology.“
“With the conclusion of this contract, the foundation is laid for the expansion of ACO technology into the global market and I’m confident this cutting edge technology, the value of which SK Innovation will continue to bolster, will deliver new value and strong growth globally,” said Dr. DS Kim, President of SK Innovation Global Technology.