ExxonMobil Chemical will license its tubular high-pressure low density polyethylene (LDPE) process technology to Saudi International Petrochemical Co.’s (Sipchem) new world-scale ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) plant in Jubail, Saudi Arabia. The technology will be deployed at a 200,000 tonnes/yr plant to be built at Sipchem's site in Jubail Industrial City as part of the company’s third-phase projects with operations to begin at the end of 2013.
ExxonMobil says the technology, which has been licensed to eight companies globally, allows a wide range of both EVAs and LDPE grades to be manufactured. ExxonMobil itself has 1.1 million tonnes/yr of installed LDPE capacity at four locations globally. Sipchem says the technology will allow it to introduce a new EVA manufacturing process to the Middle East.
In addition to tubular LDPE and EVA, ExxonMobil licenses autoclave processes for the materials, as well as technology to create polypropylene, xylene, paraxylene, benzene, mixed xylenes, ethylbenzene, cumene, propylene, and ethylene, with proprietary catalysts within aromatics and alkylation processes.
Sipchem, which was established in 1999, has five affiliated companies operating in Jubail, producing methanol, butanediol, carbon monoxide, acetic acid, and vinyl acetate monomer. As part of its third phase of expansion, Sipchem is developing an integrated olefins derivatives complex that will consist of nine plants with a production capacity of 800,000 tonnes/yr. The project is scheduled to start in 2013. In lieu of a high-pressure tubular reactor, LDPE or EVA can be produced in an autoclave process, utilizing a high-pressure stirred autoclave reactor. —[email protected]