Contract let for Chinese grassroots petrochemical project

Ningxia Baota Chemical Fiber Co. Ltd. (NBCF), a subsidiary of privatized Ningxia Baota Petrochemical Group Co. Ltd. (NBPG), has let a contract to Honeywell’s UOP LLC to provide technology licensing and equipment for a grassroots petrochemical complex to be built in Yinchuan City, Ningxia, China.

As part of the agreements, UOP will provide a suite of its proprietary technologies and equipment for the new complex, which will use UOP’s energy-efficient aromatics complex design to convert heavy naphtha into 800,000 tonnes/year (tpy) of high-purity paraxylene, Honeywell said.

The plant also will produce 520,000 tpy of high-quality gasoline, as well as 200,000 tpy of benzene, the service provider said.

The scope of delivery under the contract package includes the following unit process technologies:

• UOP’s naphtha hydrotreating process, for the pretreatment of reforming feed.

• UOP’s CCR Platforming process, for conversion of low-quality naphtha into high-octane blending components for gasoline and feed for aromatics production.

• UOP’s Extractive Distillation Sulfolane process, for recovery of high-purity benzene and toluene.

• UOP’s Tatoray process, for increasing production of benzene and xylenes.

• UOP’s Parex process, for recovery of paraxylene from mixed xylenes.

• UOP’s Isomar process, for conversion of mixed xylenes or naphtha reformate into more valuable high-purity paraxylene.

• UOP’s Par-Isom process, for upgrading light naphtha into high-value isomerate for gasoline blending.

In addition to technology licensing, UOP will provide basic engineering, commissioning services, training services, proprietary equipment, catalysts, and adsorbents for the new complex, the service provider said.

A value of contract was not disclosed.

The complex, which is due to be commissioned in 2018, is designed to increase NBPG’s competitiveness in Asia Pacific’s paraxylene market, which accounts for 83% of global paraxylene demand, according to Honeywell.

NBCF’s contract award to UOP follows an agreement signed between NBPG and UOP in February to establish long-term cooperation on technology for aromatics production technology, NBPG said in a March 18, 2015, release.

Overall plans

NBPG’s proposed petrochemical complex comes as part of the company’s broader plans for environmentally friendly and energy-efficient integrated processing operations in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region’s chemical industrial park.

The new complex, which will be part of Ningxia’s planned textile park, will be supplied by feedstock from NBPG-owned Ningxia Baota Energy Chemical Corp.’s nearby 5 million-tpy refinery in the petrochemical zone of Ningdong Energy Chemical Base, according to the company’s web site.

In March 2015, NGPG completed an environmental impact assessment (EIA) for a NBCF’s proposed 1.2 million-tpy purified terephthalic acid (PTA) project, which will be fed by raw materials supplied by the other units in the new complex, NGPG said in a release.

The PTA project is scheduled to complete construction in 2017, the company said in a May statement.

According to NGPG’s website, the integrated petrochemical complex will include the following unit processing-production capacities:

• Hydrocracking: 2 million tpy.

• Catalytic reforming: 2 million tpy.

• Aromatics extraction: 800,000 tpy.

• Isomerization: 200,000 tpy.

• PTA: 1.2 million tpy.

Contact Robert Brelsford at

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