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Air Products to supply hydrogen and other gases for Bharat Petroleum Kochi refinery expansion project; company’s first H2 production in India
4 October 2013
Air Products has signed a long-term agreement with Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) and will build, own, and operate several new industrial gas production facilities in Kochi, Kerala, India. The new facilities will supply industrial gases to BPCL’s Kochi Refinery, which is currently undergoing a $2.6-billion integrated expansion project that will increase its crude refining capacity to 15.5 million metric tons per annum (approximately 310,000 barrels per day).
The new industrial gas complex will provide hydrogen, syngas, nitrogen and oxygen for BPCL’s Kochi Refinery and its proposed petrochemicals complex. The facilities will support India’s largest-ever outsourced hydrogen requirement and will result in Air Products’ first hydrogen production facilities in India.
A phased onstream for the products supplied to BPCL’s Kochi Refinery targets late 2015 for the initial supply of gases.
Under the agreement, Air Products will provide a combination of the following plant technologies:
two steam methane reformer (SMR) trains combining to produce approximately 16.4 tonnes per hour (approximately 165 million standard cubic feet per day) of hydrogen to be used in the production of cleaner burning transportation fuels and petrochemicals;
a cryogenic syngas purification system to produce syngas, a mixture of purified hydrogen and carbon monoxide;
steam generated from Air Products’ units for BPCL’s manufacturing process; an air separation unit to produce nitrogen and oxygen for the refinery and petrochemical complex; and
a gas turbine to produce power for the Air Products facilities.
These efforts and other productivity improvements will help to improve the BPCL Kochi Refinery’s conversion of heavy crude, allowing for the production of cleaner fuels to meet Euro IV/V specifications. It will also position BPCL and the petrochemicals facility for diversification into higher value-added petrochemicals. The plant configuration and deployed technologies support Air Products’ overall sustainability goals of reducing energy consumption and emissions.
The new hydrogen facilities will be built through the global hydrogen alliance between Air Products and Technip, a world leader in project management, engineering and construction. The plant will feature the latest technology advancements to maximize energy efficiency and emissions reduction, and will include optimal heat integration, which in turn lowers feedstock consumption during production.
BPCL is India’s second largest public sector oil company and a Global Fortune 500 company with four domestic refineries, two of which, Kochi and Mumbai, are wholly owned. The company reported $41 billion in annual sales and total assets of $7.4 billion on their 2012 financial statements. It is listed on the Indian Stock exchange and is 54.9% owned by the Indian government.
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