INEOS Oligomers Announces New World Scale High Viscosity PAO Unit
Today, INEOS Oligomers announced its intention to build a world scale High Viscosity Polyalphaolefin (PAO) unit. “The new unit will initially have a nameplate capacity of 20 thousand metric tons per annum. In addition, the unit will also be able to be efficiently debottlenecked to support anticipated sales growth when required. The unit will be built at our existing PAO facility in La Porte, TX, in order to exploit several available site synergies. The targeted start-up of the unit will be late 2016” outlined Karel Brabant, INEOS Oligomers Operations Director.
“The new unit will utilize our successful metallocene high viscosity PAO technology that was first developed on a pilot scale and then optimized on a semi-works unit” stated Project Manager Pete DiGiacinto. “The unit represents the culmination of a great collaborative effort between our technology, operations and market development teams to commercialize a R&D concept in record time. We had already expanded our initial supply capability by 50% to keep pace with demand. Therefore, it was the right time to transition into a full scale unit” he added.
“This new unit will cement our position as a major producer of high viscosity PAO and complements our existing global leadership in low viscosity grades” commented INEOS Oligomers Business Director Joe Walton. “We began supplying the market with these new high performance products three years ago. Our market entry was primarily at the urging of existing PAO customers who were experiencing supply issues for high viscosity grades. In comparison to conventional material, our decene-based metallocene products have a number of superior attributes such as: higher viscosity indexes, lower pour points and lower Brookfield viscosities. To date, the business has been a great success story for us, given the strong demand for wind turbine and other industrial applications. Customers like the formulation options our products give them and that we are also directly back integrated into the raw material production” he added.
“This new unit represents another building block in our long term “organic” growth strategy to significantly expand the size and scope of our division” declared Bob Learman, INEOS Oligomers CEO. “We continue to enjoy the support of our INEOS Group Chairman Jim Ratcliffe, who views these investment plans as a key component of the company’s vision for growth in North America” he concluded.