EghtesadOnline: Persian Gulf Star Refinery in Bandar Abbas in southern Hormozgan Province has halted production of sour naphtha and henceforth all flammable oils produced at this refinery will be sweet, the managing director said.
The refinery has produced both sour and sweet naphtha so far, but because of changes in planning it will now produce only sweet naphtha,” the Oil Ministry news service Shana quoted Mohammad-Ali Dadvar as saying.
By the end of April, the plant will produce 20,000 barrels of sweet naphtha per day, “and the output will be used as feedstock for petrochemical companies,” he added.
The terms sweet and sour are a reference to the sulfur content of the product. Sweet naphtha is easier to transport and because sulfur is corrosive, sweet naphtha causes less damage to the plants and results in lower maintenance costs, according to Financial Tribune.
There is strong demand in Iran and Asia for sweet naphtha that is used to produce ethylene and propylene -- the building blocks for plastics.
The changes in planning have also affected Phase 4 of the refinery.
Initially, this phase was to be developed to process 120,000 bpd of gas condensates and produce 12 million liters of Euro-5 gasoline and diesel, similar to other three phases. “But now it will help optimize quality and remove drawbacks of the other three phases,” Dadvar said without elaboration.
The first three phases were fed by 120,000 barrels of gas condensate per day (360,000 bpd altogether) in the past years.
“After investing $90 million and boosting refining capacity in the three phases, the plant feedstock has increased and the PGSR can now process and refine 400,000 bpd of gas condensate”.
Gas condensate used in the PGSR is supplied by the South Pars Gas Field off the Persian Gulf.
The Middle East's largest gas condensate refinery, PGSR, is designed to produce high-octane gasoline and diesel and other high value products including kerosene, LPG and naphtha.
The plant’s gasoline output will reach 47 million liters per day and diesel 13 million liters per day by next week, the official said.
With the launch of the third phase last year with a capacity to produce 45 million liters of gasoline a day, domestic gasoline production reached 105 million liters a day.