29 March 2010 21:42 [Source: ICIS news]
SAN ANTONIO, Texas (ICIS news)--LyondellBasell recently completed work at its Channelview olefins complex in Texas to maximise its feedstock flexibility, a top company executive said on Monday.
LyondellBasell senior vice president of base chemicals and polyethylene Vaughn Deasy said on the sidelines of the International Petrochemical Conference that a project was completed to take “advantage of feedstock flexibility that had been lost over the years”.
Two olefin units at the Channelview facility manufacture ethylene, propylene, butadiene and benzene. Each of the olefins units has a capacity of 873,000 tonnes/year, according to ICIS plants and projects.
In February, LyondellBasell subsidiary Equistar Chemicals restarted its Corpus Christi cracker in Texas following a two-month turnaround to allow the unit to run mostly on lighter feedstocks.
The change in the feedslate at the 771,000 tonne/year Corpus Christi cracker was part of an ongoing trend in the US olefins industry, which now relies on natural gas liquids (NGLs) for around 80% of its feeds.
Producers have switched to lighter feeds to take advantage of lower costs off NGLs compared with heavier feedstocks such as naphtha and gas oil.
LyondellBasell permanently closed its 544,000 tonne/year heavy feedstock Chocolate Bayou olefins plant in Texas last year as part of the move to lighter feeds.
Hosted by the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association (NPRA), the International Petrochemical Conference continues through Tuesday.
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