Arya Sasol Polymer Company, Iran


During 2000 Iran's National Petrochemical Company (NPC) announced that it was to develop its ninth olefins complex which would be based around a cracker producing one million tpa of ethylene. The complex, which is under construction, is located in Iran's Pars Special Economic Energy Zone, known as Assaluyeh.

During the second half of 2003 NPC signed a joint venture agreement with South African chemical company Sasol to construct their ninth olefins complex.

Along with the one million tpa cracker, downstream production comprises a 300,000tpa facility producing high-density and medium-density polyethylene (hdPE / mdPE), and a 300,000tpa low-density polyethylene (ldPE). The complex is scheduled to become fully operational during the second half of 2006.

Ethylene contract

During 2000 NPC awarded French contractor Technip a contract for the one million tpa ethylene cracker. The contract was valued at more than $178m (€200m) and included basic and detailed engineering, supervision during construction and commissioning as well as training services.

"Arya Sasol is located in Iran's Pars Special Economic Energy Zone."

Iran's Nargan partnered Technip in the project and was responsible for detailed engineering and the procurement and supply of equipment and materials locally.

Ethylene process technology

Technip provided its proprietary technology for the cracker.

Contract award for ldPE plant

During the final quarter of 2002 Technip and its Iranian partner Nargan were awarded the engineering, procurement and construction contract for the 300,000tpa ldPE plant.

The contract covered the basic and detailed engineering, procurement of equipment and materials as well as construction, commissioning and start-up of the facility. The contract was valued at €100m.

Process technology for the ldPE plant

The ldPE plant will use a Stamicarbon process based on clean tubular reaction technology which produces ldPE by means of high-pressure polymerisation.

Building and pre-commissioning of ldPE plant

Iran's Barzin Company part of the NBB Group was contracted to carry out the building and pre-commissioning of the low-density polyethylene (ldPE) plant.

Contract for mdPE/hdPE plant

During the first quarter of 2003 NPC awarded Germany's Uhde, along with Iran's Sazeh a contract for the mdPE / hdPE facility. The contract included engineering, procurement and construction. The contract was said to be valued at between €100m and €150m.

mdPE / hdPE process technology

Basell provided its Lupotech G gas-phase process technology for the mdPE /hdPE production facilities.

Engineering review and site supervision services

"The complex is scheduled to become fully operational during the second half of 2006."

A contract valued at $3m was awarded to Engineers India and Energy Industries Engineering and Design of Iran.

The two companies were contracted to provide supervisory services for engineering, and construction coordination, including field inspection, quality control, testing and pre-commissioning for the olefins complex.

The contract was awarded in July 2003 and ran for 36 months.

Feedstock

Feedstock for the cracker is being provided by Iran's Pars Oil and Gas Company from the South Pars gas field.

Plate heat exchangers

During the first quarter of 2004, Spanish engineering company Intecsa Uhde Industrial in cooperation with Sazeh Consultants placed an order with Alfa Laval for 11 large plate heat exchangers.

Made of titanium, the heat exchangers would be used in Arya Sasol's production plants. The value of the contract was not disclosed.

Pipeline auxilaries

During 2004 Douglas Italia supplied sight flow indicators for use at Arya Sasol's hdPE and mdPE facilities.

The Italian company says that it has developed an extensive range of pipeline auxiliaries specialising in the design and manufacture of sight flow indicators.

Pipes, valves and fittings

Netherlands group Van Leeuwen Pipe and Tube Group was awarded a contract to supply pipes, valves and fittings for Arya Sasol's petrochemical complex. The value of the contract was not disclosed.

Arya Sasol background

The Arya Sasol Petrochemical project is part of National Petrochemical Company's ninth olefins project. During 2000, soon after the development of the ethylene cracker and downstream plants was originally announced, BP said that is was considering taking a stake in the proposed project. But in February 2002 BP decided to withdraw its interest in the project.

"The development of the company's facilities have suffered a number of set backs and delays."

NPC began negotiatons with other interested parties and in 2003 NPC signed a joint venture agreement with South African chemical company Sasol to construct the ninth olefins complex.

The subsequent 50:50 joint venture is known as Arya Sasol Polymer Company.

Development of the company's facilities have suffered a number of set backs and delays. Much of this has been attributed to the shortage of experienced personal as the Middle East, along with China, experiences strong growth in the development of major industrial and infrastructure projects.

Start up of the facilities has moved on several occasions. The original start-up date was 2004, this is now set to be the second half of 2006.