Yara Porsgrunn Fertiliser Plant Expansion, Norway

Yara International started the expansion of its fertiliser complex in Porsgrunn, Norway, in January 2015. The complex is located within the Heroya Industrial Park, about 140km southwest of Oslo, and covers an area of approximately 1.5km2.

The company approved the expansion project in June 2012, the front end engineering design (FEED) studies started in December 2013 and the investment approval was made in October 2014. Project completion is scheduled for 2017.

The overall investment for the project is estimated to reach NOK 2,250m (approximately $350m). Part of this investment will also be used to further add 150,000t of annual nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (NPK - complete fertiliser) capacity at the company's Glomfjord (Norway) and Uusikaupunki (Finland) plants.

Yara Porsgrunn fertiliser complex details

The Yara Porsgrunn Fertiliser Complex integrates an ammonia plant with a capacity of 530,000t/y, three nitric acid units with a combined capacity of 1.35Mt/y, two NPK units, namely NPK2 and NPK3, with a combined capacity of 2Mt/y, and two calcium nitrate (CN) units with a total capacity of approximately 1Mt/y. The complex also produces gases and chemicals for industrial applications.

It is equipped with storage and loading facilities, including three bagging units for NPK, CN and CN pallets, for bulk deliveries. Bagged products are exported through vessels, containers and trucks.

Yara's Porsgrunn site first came online in 1929 with the start of nitric acid and calcium nitrate production, while production of NPK started in 1938 and that of ammonia started in 1965. The NPK units were expanded in 1967 and 1987, while the nitric acid units were expanded in 1991.

Yara Porsgrunn Fertiliser complex expansion

The project is a result of the increasing demand for high-quality NPK fertiliser for cash crop markets outside Europe. Asia alone accounts for the purchase of 25% of NPK produced from the complex.

The project primarily involves the expansion of the existing NPK2 and NPK3 units, and the existing calcium nitrate units. It will involve the construction of a new building in front of the existing NPK 3, and complete modifications to NPK 2. The existing calcium nitrate plant will be upgraded and a new storage silo will be installed outside the building.

The project will increase the annual production capacities of NPK by an additional 50,000t and calcium nitrate by an additional 200,000t.

It also involves the construction of a new nitric acid plant with a nameplate capacity of 300,000t/y to replace the existing plant. It will integrate new technologies to reduce emissions and greenhouse gases, improve energy efficiency, and reduce waste. It will supply feedstock for the development of NPK fertiliser across Yara's production sites.

Contractors involved

The engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) contract for the NPK and calcium nitrate plants was awarded to Pöyry. The FEED studies for the same were performed by Yara in collaboration with Bilfinger.

Técnicas Reunidas (TR) is the main contractor for the nitric acid plant, while the technology for the plant will be licensed by its subsidiary Espindesa. The contract value of the project is €85m (approximately $96m). TR performed the FEED studies for the new plant.

Marketing commentary for Yara International

Yara International, the world's biggest supplier of plant nutrients, is headquartered at Oslo, Norway. It operates in more than 50 countries and has production sites in 17 countries. Its Porsgrunn complex employs 450 people and is the biggest production unit at Herøya Industrial Park.

The company markets its fertiliser products to 150 countries, under five main brands: YaraBela, YaraLiva, YaraMila, YaraVera, and YaraVita.