Sulzer starts up world’s largest pygas-to-styrene extraction unit

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Sulzer Chemtech has completed the start-up of the world’s largest facility for styrene extraction from pyrolysis gasoline (pygas) derived from naphtha cracking.
Located in Zhejiang Petroleum & Chemical Co’s (ZPC) integrated refining and petrochemical complex in Zhoushan, China, the unit uses Sulzer Chemtech’s proprietary GT-Styrene® licensed technology to produce 100,000 tonnes of styrene per year.
The new facility upgrades pygas, a by-product obtained from three steam crackers in Zhoushan’s plant, by extracting valuable styrene for use in the petrochemical industry.
The process flexibility offered by GT-Styrene is enabling the plant to obtain high-quality ASTM 2827 grade styrene from three different units within a single train. This will help ZPC increase the overall profitability of its integrated refining and petrochemical complex.
ZPC selected Sulzer Chemtech due to its prior extensive experience in styrene extraction and positive outcome of previous collaborations.
Zhang Shoumin, director of olefin separation department at ZPC, adds: “Sulzer Chemtech is a leading licensor with a proven track record of implementing advanced pygas styrene extraction technology. Hence, the company and its GT-Styrene were an obvious choice. We are impressed with the level of support received throughout all stages of the project as well as the technology’s ability to meet product specification soon after start-up.”
Sander van Donk, head clean fuels & chemicals licensing at Sulzer Chemtech, concluded: “We are delighted to have played a key role in this ambitious project. This was a successful deployment of GT-Styrene for the world’s largest pygas-based styrene extraction plant and demonstrates our ability to scale up process technology while achieving demanding performance objectives.”

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