April 28, 2012
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№ 3 (March 2012)

Mozyr Refinery Aims at European Standards

In December 2011, a diesel fuel hydrotreating plant was commissioned in Mozyr. The design capacity of the new facility in terms of raw hydrocarbons amounts to 3 million tons per year. In addition to the actual hydrotreating plant, the facility includes a steam condensate cleaning plant, district condensate station, a flare system and a monoethanolamine regeneration plant. A total of $208.4 million have been invested into the facility.

By Vladimir Shlychkov

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   The development program of Mozyr Oil Refinery for 2010–2015 involves finding solutions to successive ambitious goals.

In particular, they include:

Increase the volume of oil refining up to 12 million tons per year (the refinery’s current processing capacity, taking into account the secondary processes is about 11 million tons per year);
Increase the depth of refining up to 89.2 percent;
Increase the level of light petroleum products extraction to 71.3 percent;
Produce the entire volume of motor fuels complying with the existing and prospective European Union standards.
The company plans to invest about $ 1.2 billion into the program implementation.

   The new hydrotreating plant (Prime D licensed by the French company Axens) produces diesel fuel with the ultra low sulfur content of 10 ppm (EN 590:2009), and cetane index of at least 58. Thanks to it and effective this year, the Mozyr Refinery, according to Vitaly Pavlov, general deputy director, will switch entirely to the production of diesel fuel in compliance with the latest European specifications (Euro-5).

   In addition, 2011 saw the commissioning of the hydrogen generation plant built under the Foster Wheeler (Italy) technology. Its capacity is 50,000 cubic meters of hydrogen per hour; the investments totaled $98.2 million. The plant will meet the hydrogen needs of a number of plants like the cat-cracked gasoline hydrodesulfurization, diesel fuel hydrotreatment, and isomerisation.
The automated on-spot gasoline station with a capacity of five million tons per year should reduce the loss of petroleum products (that previously reached about 2,000 tons annually), speed up the loading operations and reduce the negative impact on the environment. The investment into the facility reached $33 million. The technology licensor is Marcon (Germany).

Belorussian Breakthrough

   This large-scale upgrade of Mozyr Refinery started back in the 1990s. The company’s initial process layout, which gave its first commercial product in 1975, assumed the depth of oil processing at the level of about 50 percent only. At the same time, a concept took shape of the phased refinery upgrade based on the production processes, which would ensure the improvement of the above indicator and the output confirming to the international quality standards.

   The reconstruction effort involved the upgrade of existing process plants, as well as construction of some more facilities. These included:
– Concentrated hydrogen plant (PSA) licensed by Linde AG (Germany);
– Tar visbreaking plant under the IFP technology;
– Catalytic cracking complex using the UOP (USA) technology
– Benzene production complex (benzene concentrate extraction plant and extractive benzene distillation plant);
– Combined alkilation plant (UOP technology);
– Installation of the flare gas recovery plant under GARO (Italy) technology.
These projects allowed Mozyr Oil Refinery to become one of the best refineries in Eastern Europe.
In 2010, the cat-cracked gasoline hydrodesulfurization plant built after the Axens design was put into operation. Its capacity is 1.1 million tons per year. The project investment has totaled $91 million. The plant launch helped reduce the sulfur content in the final product to less than 10 ppm and begin production of Euro-5 gasoline (Table 1).


   In the opinion of Anatoly Kupriyanov, Mozyr Oil Refinery general director, it necessary to employ every opportunity to expand the investment programs. In 2015, the company will build some new production facilities, which should provide for successful operation amid conditions of tougher competition prevailing in the EU and CIS markets.

   The most important facilities include the isomerization plant (licensor is Axens) with a capacity of 300 tons per year. The project will get nearly $100 million’s worth of investments. As Mikhail Tyaglik, acting director of the Directorate for Reconstruction and Development, told OGE, the equipment installation is underway. After the plant commissioning scheduled for 2012, production of AI-95 gasoline, EN 228:2008 (Euro-5) will increase, while the production of raw pyrolysis gasoline will stop to be turned into the feedstock for isomerization plants.

   Mozyr Oil Refinery is soon to change the structure of its commercial gasoline production (Table 2). Production of low-octane fuel should stop in 2013.
This year, the fuel oil vacuum distillation plant designed by Neftekhimproekt (Russia) with a capacity of 3 million tons per year is expected to be launched. This will allow the depth of oil refining to be improved, reducing the yield of fuel oil. Investment in the facility will be about $ 80 million and its start-up should decrease the proportion of straight-run fuel oil in commercial fuel oil and increase the amount of straight-run tar, not processed at the recycling plants. Production of commercial fuel oil in 2012 will drop down to 3,418,000 tons (3,655,000 tons in 2011).

   The plans for 2013–2014 foresee commissioning of a complex for the production of high octane gasoline components (Axens technology). This will include:
– Methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) production plant with a capacity of 60,000 tons per year;
– Tertamylmethyl ether plant (TAME) with a capacity of 260,000 tons per year;
– Dimersol-G production plant with a capacity of 146,000 tons per year.
The projected cost of the complex is $125.6 million.

   “The commissioning of the MTBE, Dimersol-G and TAME plants will increase the number of high-octane gasoline components,”  Alexander Shoretz, Chief Process Engineer, Mozyr Refinery, told OGE.  “This would phase out the production of gasoline RON 80, whereas the share of the Euro5-compliant RON-95 should increase to 83.2 percent.”
Plans are underway to build a black oil hydrocracking complex by 2015 to include the following:
– Axens-designed combined hydrocracking plant with a capacity of 3 million tons per year;
– Hydrogen generation plant built on the Foster Wheeler technology;
– Sulfur production plant (developed by Siirtec Nigi S.p.A., Italy).  

   Investment into this ambitious project should exceed $890 million.
The commissioning of the black oil hydrocracking complex should deepen the oil processing, while reducing the production of commercial fuel oil three times. At the same time, its entire stock will be manufactured to ISO 8217. The volume of gasoline production will rise by 200,000 tons per year, and Euro5-compliant diesel share will increase by 825,000 tons per year. The sulfur content of commercial fuel oil will fall to 1 percent by weight.

   The complexity factor of Mozyr Oil Refinery (Nelson index) will have reached 11.8 by 2015, aligning the company with the Europe’s best factories.

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