Phillips Petroleum Co. of Bartlesville, Okla., plans to market its proprietary E-Series technology, which it claims can boost ethylene production by converting waste acetylene back into ethylene.
The company has been using its acetylene hydrogenation catalyst technology at two ethylene units in Sweeny, Texas, since 1995. By eliminating reactor upsets and thermal runaway, reducing operating expenses and lowering off-spec production, Phillips added $10 million to its 1996 sales.
Acetylene is an unwanted byproduct of the making of ethylene, a key feedstock in polyethylene and PVC. Acetylene can destroy the effectiveness of PE catalysts if not removed.
John Mihm, Phillips' senior vice president of corporate technology, said E-Series is ``a major breakthrough'' that will boost the company's global position as a major ethylene producer.
Separately, Phillips announced it has signed three letters of intent with two major Chinese petrochemical makers.
Phillips will conduct a joint feasibility study for an ethylene, PE and polypropylene facility with Lanzhou Chemical Industry Corp. The proposed $2.4 billion complex in Lanzhou would include a 1.3 billion-pound-per-year ethylene cracker.
The company also will conduct a feasibility study with Shanghai Petrochemical Co. Ltd. for a 100 million-pound-per-year K-Resin styrene butadiene copolymer plant in Jinshanwei.
The third letter of intent is also with Shanghai Petrochemical for preliminary studies to expand its 220 million-pound-per-year PE plant currently under construction in Jinshanwei. That plant is to begin operating in 1998.
Wayne Allen, Phillips chairman and chief executive officer, said the projects not only demonstrate Phillips' commitment to meet growing worldwide demand for plastics and petrochemicals, but also its commitment to China's efforts to build a world-class petrochemical industry.