FACT moves to LNG from Naphtha

FACT has changed over to LNG from naphtha/furnace oil in its ammonia plant

Published: 19th October 2013 10:06 AM  |   Last Updated: 19th October 2013 10:06 AM   |  A+A-

Scripting history in the industrial sector in the state, public  sector fertiliser company Fertilisers and Chemicals Travancore Limited  (FACT) has fully changed over to LNG from Naphtha/Furnace Oil in its ammonia  plant and captive power plant boiler facilities.

The plants of the cash-strapped company has been undergoing conversion for the past few months in view of availability of LNG through Petronet’s  terminal at Puthuvypeen.

FACT has so far made an investment of Rs 34 crores and Rs 13 crores respectively in converting its ammonia plant and captive power plant boiler facilities to  switch over from the traditionally-used naphtha and furnace oil to Re-gassified Liquid Natural Gas (RLNG).

Though FACT started using LNG in the plants since September 3, full fledged operation began on October 5. 

All the boilers in FACT captive power plant have changed over to LNG fuel on   September 3. The change over of fuel feed stock of Ammonia plant began on  September 21 when ammonia plant was running at 80 percent.

The feed stock change over of ammonia plant was done online on September 26   at 80 percent plant load.

With LNG being used in its plants, FACT has achieved the distinction of the only company using all three solid, liquid and gaseous feedstock for production of ammonia, a major raw material for all fertilizers. Firewood was used at FACT in 1940s.  Then it switched over to naphtha, now to LNG.

“Most significant difference between Naphtha and Natural Gas-based Ammonia plants are in desulphurisation section. Since gas does not contain much sulphur unlike in Naphtha, pre-desulphurisation section need not be operated. Other important aspect is in the hydrogen to carbon ratio, which is high in case of gas. As a result, less steam is consumed in the reforming section and less carbon is generated,” FACT authorities said.

The FACT authorities said conversion of the plant from one fuel to another one was an engineering challenge. The online changeover of fuel and feedstock in a running ammonia plant is a new engineering feat never attempted before  “HTAS Denmark, FACT’s  ammonia technology licensor was the consultant in converting the plant from naphtha to LNG. They provided engineering design package and technical assistance services for feedstock conversion,” the authorities said.


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