Borealis Taps Jacobs for Belgium PDH Plant Study

Borealis Taps Jacobs for Belgium PDH Plant Study
Proposed 740-kiloton facility would be one of world's largest PDH plants.

Borealis has awarded Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. a contract to complete a front end engineering design (FEED) study for a propane dehydrogenation (PDH) plant at its existing production site in Kallo, Belgium, Jacobs announced Wednesday.

“A new and innovative PDH plant of this scale would be a significant investment in the chemical industry in Europe and a response to market demand for polypropylene and propylene,” Jacobs Petroleum and Chemicals President Vinayak Pai said in a written statement. “We look forward to continuing our relationships with Borealis through the next development phase of this world-scale petrochemical plant.”

Jacobs stated that the contract award follows the successful completion of the feasibility study of the plant, which would boast a targeted annual production capacity of 740 kilotons. According to the company, the PDH plant would be one of the largest and most efficient facilities of its kind.

In a separate announcement from November 2017, Borealis stated that it was launching a nine-month feasibility study to assess capacity increases at its polypropylene (PP) plants in Europe – beginning with the three Borealis-operated PP facilities in Belgium. Noting that PP supply in Europe is not keeping up with increasing demand, particularly from the automotive industry, Borealis said in November that it anticipates final investment decisions in Fourth Quarter 2018. Capacity increases could go on-stream from First Quarter 2020 to early 2022, Borealis added.

“We have selected a trusted partner in Jacobs Engineering for the FEED phase of this important project, which will allow us to further strengthen our position as a leading and innovative polypropylene and propylene supplier in Europe,” Borealis Base Chemicals Executive Vice President Markku Korvenranta stated in Jacobs’ Wednesday announcement.

The FEED study includes the preparation of the basic design package for both the inside and outside battery limit areas of the new PDH plant, noted Jacobs, which anticipates a mid-2018 FEED phase completion.


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