ORPIC lets contract for Sohar refinery expansion

Oman Oil Refineries & Petroleum Industries Co. (ORPIC), through a contractor, has let a contract to Metso Corp., Helsinki, to supply valve technology for work related to its Sohar Refinery Improvement Project (SRIP), a brownfield, multibillion dollar modernization project that includes major technical improvements to ORPIC’s existing 116,000-b/d refinery about 230 km northwest of the Omani capital of Muscat (OGJ Online, May 1, 2014).

As part of the contract, Metso will deliver its proprietary Neles ValvGuard intelligent solenoid valves to ensure reliable emergency-shutdown valve operation for over 600 safety-critical valves involved in the refinery expansion, Metso said.

South Korean firm Daelim Industrial Co. Ltd., one of the main contractors for the Sohar project (OGJ Online, Nov. 25, 2013), selected Neles ValvGuard valve technology for the contract package because of the valves’ ability to perform partial-valve stroke tests on a regular basis to verify performance for predictive maintenance purposes at the plant, as well as their ability to maintain the required safety-integrity level for safety loops.

In addition to their compatibility with both third-party and Metso-produced valves, Neles ValvGuards are fully compatible with the Sohar refinery’s Foundation fieldbus communication protocol, according to Metso.

A value of the contract was not disclosed.

ORPIC most recently awarded a SRIP-related contract to MAN Diesel & Turbo SE (MDT), Augsburg, Germany, to provide project management as well as supply parts and comprehensive engineering services for the complete shutdown and overhaul of Sohar’s refinery’s residue fluidized catalytic cracking unit (RFCC) during a planned maintenance turnaround scheduled for 2016 (OGJ Online, June 16, 2015).

Designed to improve the Sohar refinery’s ability to overcome existing technical constraints associated with processing the changing quality of Oman Export Blend (OEB) crude, SRIP also will enable the refinery to meet international environmental standards, serve growing domestic demand for refined products, and enhance the refinery’s competitiveness and profitability (OGJ Online, Apr. 1, 2015).

In addition to the revamped RFCC, the SRIP will involve integrating five units at the refinery, including a hydrocracker and coker, which will boost crude throughputs by 70% by adding 82,000 b/d of OEB crude oil processing capacity to achieve an expanded refining capacity of 198,000 b/d.

Once completed, SRIP will eliminate fuel oil yields from the refinery entirely as well as increase the plant’s product yields for diesel (90%), gasoline (37%), jet fuel (93%), LPG (91%), naphtha (175%), and propylene (44%).

SRIP is scheduled to be commissioned in 2017.

Contact Robert Brelsford at rbrelsford@ogjonline.com.

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