The district of Jamnagar in northwest India is home to the world’s largest crude oil refinery. It currently boasts a processing capacity of 1.24 million barrels per day, which corresponds to 1.8 percent of the global refining market. This equates to a daily oil processing capacity of almost 80 Olympic-size swimming pools. Now in its third expansion phase, the Jamnagar complex is being equipped with the ability to generate its own synthesis gas as well as energy through the gasification of petroleum coke. Expansion plans include the integration of a petrochemical complex into the refinery. This step adds value to the production process flow by enabling petrochemical by-products to be captured.
The Linde Engineering Division played a key role in delivering several of the plant technologies required to make this project a success.
World´s largest air separation units
Linde supported the gasification project by delivering five of the world’s largest air separation units (ASUs). Experts from Linde Engineering and the refinery operator scaled up various plant component designs to take performance into uncharted territory. Each of the five ASUs is designed for an oxygen (O2) production capacity of over 5,200 tonnes per day. The compressors required to operate the ASUs were modified in close collaboration between equipment suppliers and Linde process engineers. This cooperative effort contributed to a significant improvement in energy efficiency per tonne of oxygen produced. By teaming up with the customer and equipment manufacturers, Linde Engineering managed to optimise the plant configuration to leverage economies of scale and boost energy efficiency.
RECTISOL® acid gas removal units
To treat the synthesis gas generated during the gasification process, Linde also delivered two RECTISOL® acid gas removal units. Services for this part of the project involved licensing, process design, detail engineering and procurement.
The design includes several coil-wound heat exchangers (CWHE), manufactured at Linde’s fabrication shops in Schalchen (Germany) and Dalian (China) using proprietary know-how. Again, the different process units required close cooperation between Linde’s engineering teams in Germany and India, the customer and the third-party equipment suppliers. In the end, this global partnership successfully realised the largest acid gas removal facility ever constructed.
It is complemented by a highly efficient sulfur recovery unit with four trains capable of recovering 99.98 percent of the sulfur components contained in various off-gas streams. Linde added significant value to the recovery design by combining state-of-the-art licensed sulfur recovery technology with Linde’s proprietary burner design based on oxygen enrichment. The tail gas from the sulfur recovery unit is routed back to the Linde RECTISOL® unit using a special patented process step. This eliminated the need for the customer to invest in a separate tail gas treatment unit, which would have been necessary with conventional competitor designs for sulfur recovery.
Gas-fired heaters and pressure swing adsorption units
In addition to the air separation and acid gas removal units, Linde delivered other plant components such as five large gas-fired heaters to superheat high-pressure steam as well as three pressure swing adsorption units to produce the high-purity hydrogen required to operate the refinery. Thanks to its multiple design and manufacturing facilities around the world, Linde was able to cover this extensive scope of delivery.
Perfect teamwork leads to success
On all elements of this project, collaborative teamwork was so successful during the bidding phase that the required components were conceptually designed by the time the customer placed the final order. The success of the Jamnagar project is proof positive of one of Linde’s core competencies: The ability to collaborate closely with customers and supply partners to realise even the most complex solutions on time and on spec, regardless of plant location and size.