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Petrofac announces startup of Kuwait’s largest crude distillation unit

By Mary Page Bailey |

Petrofac Ltd. (St. Helier, U.K.) has announced that The Clean Fuels Project for Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) has reached a major milestone with the with the safe and successful startup of the Crude Distillation Unit (CDU) 111 at Mina Abdullah Refinery.

With a refining capacity of 264,000 barrels per day, it is the largest CDU in Kuwait. The Crude Column is the largest single equipment transported and erected, being approximately 75 metres long by 13 meters wide/high and weighing 900 metric tons.

PEtrofac is leading a joint venture partnership with Samsung Engineering Co Ltd and CB&I Nederland BV (now McDermott International). The project will increase processing capacity and enable the production of a new generation of ultra-low Sulphur fuel products.

Prashant Bokil, JV Project Director, said: “The successful operation of the Crude Distillation Unit is very much the gateway to this important project for Kuwait’s refining industry. Well done to everyone involved, the team has achieved this major milestone despite the many recent operational challenges due to the pandemic. We are focused on the remaining work ahead, as we progressively continue the hand over and commission each unit safely to complete the refinery mega project.”

The project has 12 new process units from five licensors, inter-refinery transfer lines and interconnecting pipe rack. With such a large Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) project, operational excellence has been a key theme throughout. At the peak of activity, more than 15,000 people were working onsite. It has also entailed more than 125 cranes and over 1,600 separate items of construction machinery and equipment. Meanwhile, an exemplary safety record has been maintained, with more than 64.5 million work hours without lost-time incident since May 2018.

 

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