Axens details scope of work for Azerbaijani refinery

Axens SA, Rueil-Malmaison, France, has released additional details of its earlier contract award from State Oil Co. of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR) to build diesel fuel and gasoline hydrotreating units as part of the ongoing modernization and expansion project at the Heydar Aliyev (formerly New Baku) refinery at Baku.

First announced by SOCAR in late October (OGJ Online, Oct. 28, 2015), the contract calls for Axens’ delivery of construction and technology licensing for the two new hydrotreaters that will help boost the refinery’s production of fuels meeting Euro 5 quality standards.

For the planned 1.2 million-tonne/year (tpy) gasoline desulfurization unit, Axens will supply its proprietary Prime-G+ technology, while the proposed 3 million-tpy diesel hydrotreater will use its Prime-D technology, Axens said.

A value of the contract was not disclosed.

Designed to be implemented in stages during 2015-19, the modernization and upgrading program at Heydar Aliyev includes plans to renovate the refinery’s primary crude processing, catalytic cracking, and catalytic reforming units.

Once completed, the revamp will increase the refinery’s crude processing capacity to about 7.5 million tpy from its current 6 million-tpy capacity, resulting in 100% production of fuels conforming to Euro 5 standards as well as high-quality raw feedstock that SOCAR will transport via pipeline to an associated ethylene and polyethylene plant operated by its subsidiary Azerikimya Production Union.

The refinery’s modernization overhaul follows the Jan. 1 shutdown and subsequent merger of processing activities at SOCAR’s Azerneftyag refinery with those of the nearby Heydar Aliyev refinery under the company’s program to eliminate economically inefficient production activities and management structures involved in the operation of two separate refineries (OGJ Online, Dec. 29, 2014).

Contact Robert Brelsford at

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