Casale has worked with a methanol plant client for many years, making a number of interventions to increase plant capacity during this time. Initially, Casale worked with the client to progressively increase the capacity of the methanol plant. Latterly the focus moved on to integration with new units to produce ammonia and melamine. This involves the design and installation of new partial oxidation, air separation and carbon dioxide recovery units, along with a completely new urea plant and a melamine plant. New storage facilities for ammonia, urea and melamine were also required. A key objective of the project was that the newly installed downstream unit operations must not affect the methanol production. The new complex must be robust and must protect the methanol plant against any possible operational disruption.
The innovative aspect of the project is to add value to streams that were considered to be waste, or required purges from the main process line, such as the reformer flue gas (waste stream) or the methanol synthesis purge stream (a required purge used as fuel).
Casale has acted as both technology licensor, design contractor and project manager on this project, which has generated several benefits in terms of efficiency and speed. Design work for the new installation is virtually complete, and site ground works are underway. The new complex is targeted to be in operation during October 2020.
Elio Strepparola and Andrea Scotto, Casale S A, Lugano, Switzerland
15 pages, 6 figures