20 November 2008 10:00 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS news)--SABIC Europe’s cracker at Wilton, UK, was restarted on Tuesday and is operating at reduced rates following an unplanned shutdown, a company source said on Thursday.
The cracker, one of Europe’s largest, had gone down on 5 November because of a technical problem.
The outage did not have an impact on the company’s ethylene (C2) and propylene (C3) supplies, but force majeure was declared on its C4 stream as its butadiene (BD) extraction unit was running at reduced rates because of the crude C4 feedstock constraints.
It was not immediately clear whether this force majeure could now be lifted.
The Wilton cracker has the capacity to produce 865,000 tonnes/year of ethylene and 400,000 tonnes/year of propylene.
SABIC also produces 100,000 tonnes/year of BD at ?xml:namespace>
Market conditions have meant that operations at the vast majority of European crackers have been dramatically cut back, in several instances to technical minimum.
BASF announced on Wednesday that it would temporarily close its Ludwigshafen 1 cracker in Germany until January 2009 because of the current economic climate.
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