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Technical defect hits output at BP complex in Gelsenkirchen, Germany

October 26/2020

MOSCOW (MRC) -- A “technical defect” has disrupted production at part of the Gelsenkirchen integrated refinery and petrochemicals complex in Germany, reported Chemweek with reference to operator BP.

The company operates plants in the Horst and Scholven districts at Gelsenkirchen, with the defect occurring at Horst, it says. “After a technical defect, there was an outage in the production area at the plant at Horst this morning,” BP says. “To relieve the systems, excess gases are currently [being] burnt using the flares at the production facility.”

BP says it is working to resume normal operations as soon as possible. It did not specify which unit has been affected, with sources suggesting it was the fluid catalytic cracker, but this was not confirmed by the company.

“There are many units in Horst...We don’t see an impact on the aromatics market at least,” according to one source. Output from the Gelsenkirchen complex includes some 1.05 million metric tons/year (MMt/y) of ethylene, 1.9 MMt/y of gasoline, and 4.2 MMt/y of diesel, according to BP data. Aromatics account for some 10% of total output from the Horst site, while olefins represent some 11% of total production, according to an IHS Markit analyst. The northern site at Scholven can produce 150,000 metric tons/year of para-xylene and 70,000 metric tons/year of ortho-xylene from mixed xylenes extracted at the refinery.

BP said earlier this month it would begin maintenance at the integrated refinery complex on 12 October, with the work at the northern site in Scholven expected to last about eight weeks.

As MRC wrote before, in September 2019, six world's major petrochemical companies in Flanders, Belgium, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, and the Netherlands (Trilateral Region) announced the creation of a consortium to jointly investigate how naphtha or gas steam crackers could be operated using renewable electricity instead of fossil fuels. The Cracker of the Future consortium, which includes BASF, Borealis, BP, LyondellBasell, SABIC and Total, aims to produce base chemicals while also significantly reducing carbon emissions. The companies agreed to invest in R&D and knowledge sharing as they assess the possibility of transitioning their base chemical production to renewable electricity.

Ethylene and propylene are feedstocks for producing polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP).

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 1,496,500 tonnes in the first eight months of 2020, up by 5% year on year. Shipments of all ethylene polymers increased, except for linear low desnity polyethylene (LLDPE). At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market reached 767,2900 tonnes in the eight months of 2020 (calculated using the formula - production minus exports plus imports - and not counting producers' inventories as of 1 January, 2020). Supply increased exclusively of PP random copolymer.

BP plc (formerly The British Petroleum Company plc and BP Amoco plc) is a British multinational oil and gas company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is one of the world's seven oil and gas "supermajors", whose performance in 2012, made it the world's sixth-largest oil and gas company, the sixth-largest energy company by market capitalization and the company with the world's 12th-largest revenue (turnover). It is a vertically integrated company operating in all areas of the oil and gas industry, including exploration and production, refining, distribution and marketing, power generation and trading. It also has renewable energy interests in biofuels, wind power, smart grid and solar technology.
Author:Margaret Volkova
Tags:Europe, PP, PE, LLDPE, PP random copolymer, propylene, ethylene, BASF, Borealis, BP Plc, LyondellBasell, Sabic, Total Petrochemicals, Germany, Russia.
Category:General News
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