For over seventy years, since building the world’s first olefin plant, Linde has continued to incorporate the latest improvements and innovations into the design of each new plant.
The high degree of creativity and the continuing success of Linde’s engineering and design staff in applying new features for the optimum plant design has resulted in Linde winning a substantial number of contracts for large-scale olefin plants in many different countries world-wide. Extensive feedback of operating data and information on process and equipment performance in operating plants has provided Linde with substantial information for the improved design of future plants.
So far more than 40 large-scale ethylene plants with a total capacity of more than 18 million tons of ethylene are built with Linde technology. These plants have been in operation for many years to the full satisfaction of the plant owners.
The process consists of two major areas – the cracking furnaces and the separation section.
The feedstock for the ethylene plant is fed after passing the pre-treatment for cracking to the furnaces. The cracked products are then routed to the separation section where the valuable products are recovered and purified.
Beside of the ethylene optionally the following valuable products can be produced from a cracking plant:
aromatics (benzene, toluene, xylene)
Some of these products are separated by licensed processes which are integrated in the olefin plant.
As product, feed, utility and environmental boundary conditions change for each plant the following challenges have to be faced in the design:
high energy efficiency
minimum environmental emissions
low production costs
low investment costs
high plant reliability
Final optimization for each plant, standardization of technical concepts and designs, continuous implementation of improvements from new developments and from practical experiences assure that the best available technology is considered in design of new plants and in revamp of existing crackers.