Giant chemistry set
The processing plant on the island of Pulau Bukom pumps raw material — ethylene — to the plant on Jurong Island through 4.5 kilometres of pipelines (2.8 miles) below one of Asia’s busiest shipping lanes.
Here the ethylene passes through a steel container where it mixes with pure oxygen. The mixture then enters the giant reactors at the heart of the plant, each weighing about 1,400 tonnes.
Each reactor contains more than 13,000 tubes. Tubes in the reactors contain millions of catalysts. These porous silver-containing beads speed up chemical reactions. They are central to the process of turning raw materials into more valuable products. At 230-260° Celsius (446-500° Fahrenheit) the catalysts accelerate a chemical reaction between oxygen and ethylene to produce ethylene oxide.
In the conventional process to make MEG, ethylene oxide would be heated and fed to a reactor with water to ultimately produce the MEG. In the new process, however, the ethylene oxide flows into a reactor with carbon dioxide (CO2) and a clear syrupy liquid catalyst helps convert the mixture into ethylene carbonate.
The ethylene carbonate enters the second reactor where it reacts with water to produce MEG. The process converts 99.2% of the ethylene oxide in the process into MEG, compared to 90% in the conventional process. This eliminates the cost of storing and shipping any secondary products.
The new process consumes less steam and produces less waste water than a traditional plant with the same capacity. The OMEGA process also produces less CO2 per tonne of MEG.
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Pasargad Energy Development Co. (PEDC) is an independent energy company based in Iran. PEDC is an integrated energy company whose activities span the entire value chain including exploration, production, refining, petrochemicals marketing, power generation & renewables as well as new high-tech venture capitalizing. Our headquarter is located in Tehran. PEDC is present across the Iranian continental shelf and international market through its subsidiaries. We create value for our shareholders through active investment, high-level monitoring of our projects, building world-class partnership and managing our risks effectively and making balanced portfolio. Meantime, we contribute to the sustainable development of the energy sector and communities in our country. PEDC’s competitiveness relies upon our values-based performance culture, with a strong commitment to transparency, cooperation and continuous operational improvement. As a wholly owned subsidiary of the Pasargad Financial Group, with Pasargad Bank being a distinctive shareholder, we owe our success to our experience, management knowledge and strong local/international partnerships since 2008. PEDC is committed to maintaining sustainability and being recognized as the strategic partner of choice in Iran’s energy and petrochemical sector.