Why Europe's Chemical Industry Needs new Technologies
That does not mean that it is easy to break into the phalanx of American companies which have built up customer relationships over a period of many years. Honeywell UOP and Lummus are the market leaders. Honeywell UOP is firmly entrenched at Dow, which is currently building a 750,000 t/a plant which will use the Oleflex process and will go into operation in 2015.
Plans are in place to build a second plant which would start production in 2018. Lummus is also well positioned with its Catofin process. It has been on board at Petrologistics for years, and that will also be the case for the new plant which is planned.
Lummus also has a second process route for propylene, namely olefin metathesis (see box). However, that is only a niche technology at the moment, because supplies of the feedstock 2-butene are also scarce (and expensive), making this process route uneconomical.
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