Engineering Reminiscences of Managing Projects in India
International engineering projects have challenges that go beyond the technical specifications: While handling projects, responding to the need of the hour is what sets engineering firms apart. Therefore, it can be necessary to cross the stipulated borderlines of essential deliverables, and extend support to the partner in adding new values to their activities and initiatives as Swiss based Foster Wheeler experienced in India.
Foster Wheeler has just completed its consultancy work for Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC) for its integrated grassroots petrochemicals complex in the Special Economic Zone at Dahej in Gujarat. The project was conceived in 2006, and ONGC has set October 2013 as the deadline for project completion and the start of commercial production.
A first of its kind, this C2-C3 facility is of strategic importance to ONGC as it will extract ethane, propane and butane from five million tonnes of rich LNG supplied from the adjacent Petronet LNG Limited terminal to provide one million tonnes per annum of feedstock to the adjacent Opal (ONGC Petro additions Limited) petrochemical complex. ONGC is a significant stakeholder of both the LNG terminal and the Opal plant, and owner and operator of C2-C3, which will be fully integrated with the other two facilities.
Set For Expansion
The new complex consists of a dual-feed cracker and associated process units to produce 1.1 million tonnes per year of polymer-grade ethylene and propylene as feedstock to downstream basic polymer units producing LLDPE, HDPE and polypropylene. Feedstock to the new complex, consisting of C2+, aromatic-rich naphtha and lean aromatic naphtha, will be supplied from ONGC’s own facilities.
The complex includes utilities, offsites and other infrastructure facilities – such as products handling or warehousing and a rail siding. Future expansion has also been considered for products including styrene and styrene-butadiene-rubber, and dedicated HDPE units. The products are destined for domestic and international markets.
Since 2000, the company has been continuously providing project management services to ONGC for all three facilities. The C2-C3 project has been handed over by the EPC contractor for final commissioning and initial operations, however, Foster Wheeler will continue to support ONGC during the final phase through to initial operation.
Provision for Future
The C2-C3 facility has been designed to accommodate a future expansion, which could take production up to 1.8 million tonnes per year of feedstock for the Opal petrochemical complex. Also, a substantial road loading facility has recently been completed that will provide ONGC with greater operational flexibility prior to the completion of the Opal petrochemical complex.