Total lets contract for unit at French refinery

Total SA has let a contract to Axens to supply technology for a vacuum gas oil hydrodesulfurization (VGO HDS) unit to be built as part of a €200-million modernization and overhaul of the 220,000-b/d Donges refinery near Saint Nazaire, France (OGJ Online, Sept. 15, 2015).

Axens will provide licensing, basic engineering, proprietary catalysts, equipment, as well as related services, for its VGO HDS technology for the unit, which will have a processing capacity of 40,000 b/d and enable the refinery to produce low-sulfur fuels that meet Europe’s more stringent quality specifications, Axens said.

As part of the Donges project, Axens has created a process scheme that is specific to the refinery’s existing environment and that incorporates Total’s requirements for energy efficiency and operational flexibility, the service provider said.

Axens disclosed neither a value of the contract nor a timeline for the project.

Upon announcing the Donges modernization program in April, Total said the new HDS unit, which will use intermediate feedstock, will receive its hydrogen supply from a steam methane reformer to be built by a contractor already under a long-term hydrogen supply contract with the refinery (OGJ Online, Apr. 16, 2015).

Contact Robert Brelsford at

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