Farabi Lab complex

Farabi Lab complex

Saudi plant to use Honeywell technology

Honeywell UOP will provide catalysts and adsorbents as well as licensing, basic engineering design and other associated services for the new complex

01 August 2017

Honeywell, a global technology leader, announced that Saudi Arabia-based Farabi Petrochemicals Company will use Honeywell UOP technologies for a new complex in Yanbu to expand its production of biodegradable detergents.

The construction of the new complex is expected to be completed in 2020, said a statement from the company.

As part of the contract, Honeywell UOP will provide catalysts and adsorbents as well as licensing, basic engineering design and other associated services for the new complex, it said.

Honeywell UOP technologies include a Unionfining hydrotreating unit, a Molex unit to produce the linear alkylbenzene (LAB) feedstock necessary for making biodegradable detergents, a Pacol unit for dehydrogenation, a DeFine unit to improve product purity, and a Detal detergent alkylation unit, it added.

John Gugel, vice president and general manager of Honeywell UOP’s Process Technology and Equipment business, said: “Farabi chose Honeywell UOP technology because it is the most efficient and widely used technology in the world for making detergents.”

“Our technologies will help Saudi Arabia meet domestic and regional demand for petrochemicals and detergents, derive more value from its petroleum resources, and help it gain self-sufficiency in these chemical intermediates,” he said.

When completed, the Yanbu complex will produce more than 120,000 metric tonnes annually (mtpa) of LAB and 246,000 mtpy of normal paraffins, in addition to de-aromatised specialty oils, asphalt, sulfonates, mining chemicals, process oils and lubes.

As a feedstock, the complex will use diesel from the Saudi Aramco refinery and kerosene from the Saudi Aramco ExxonMobil refinery in Yanbu.

According to the Gulf Petrochemicals and Chemicals Association (GPCA), Saudi Arabia had 98.5 mtpy of petrochemicals production capacity in 2016. It is the region’s second-largest industry within the manufacturing sector, creating over 500,000 jobs and $108 billion worth of products as recently as 2015.

Gugel continued: “The Yanbu facility demonstrates that refining companies in the kingdom continue to move downstream into petrochemicals, where demand is growing and margins are stronger.”

Farabi Petrochemicals Company is a 100 percent Saudi-owned closed joint stock company. It started its operations with its first integrated normal paraffin and LAB complex with Honeywell UOP technology in 2006, and doubled its LAB capacity through an expansion in 2012.

Farabi also operates an LAB complex in Jubail, on the East Coast of Saudi Arabia. The company›s new complex in Yanbu will make Farabi one of the largest producers of normal paraffins and LAB in the world.


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