Repairs shutter ethylene production at Stavrolen complex

Repair work at Lukoil’s 350,000-tonne/year Stavrolen petrochemical complex in Budennovsk, Russia, following a February fire will shutter production of ethylene and propylene at the site for 6 months, the company said (OGJ Online, Feb. 27, 2014).

A completed investigation of the Feb. 26 incident determined the fire, which broke out in the plant’s ethylene and propylene production unit No. 2, was caused by depressurization of the aluminum heat exchanger, Lukoil said.

The depressurization of the heat exchanger resulted from the fracture of a corrugated plate in the left heat-exchange section, the company said.

While repair and maintenance work at the site already is under way, Lukoil said it does not expect ethylene and propylene production capacities at the plant to resume until January 2015.

Polypropylene production from imported propylene feedstocks will resume this month, the company added.

Lukoil previously said it planned to commission of the first stage of a 2 billion cu m/year gas processing plant and modernization of existing ethylene and polyethylene units at the Stavrolen complex in 2015 (OGJ Online, Sept. 25, 2012).

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