Iran's Petrochem Sector Using Indigenized Catalysts
EghtesadOnline: Iran will have produced $215 million worth of catalysts for the petrochemical industry by 2022, managing director of the Petrochemical Research and Technology Company said.
“PRTC is striving to improve technical know-how of petrochemicals and is producing catalysts and key chemicals,” ILNA quoted Ali Pajouhan as saying.
Forty categories of catalysts worth about $260 million are annually used in the petrochemical industry in the country, according to Financial Tribune.
“Of all the 40 groups, 16 items worth $105 million per annum have been indigenized and are used domestically,” he added.
Pajouhan hoped that by 2022, Iranian engineers would produce another nine groups of catalysts worth $110 million so that the total value of indigenized catalysts would reach $215 million.
The new groups will include ammonia synthesis catalysts, ethylene oxide catalysts and methanation catalysts as well as catalysts needed for natural gas dry reforming. “Studies are underway to produce the remaining 15 catalyst groups.
A catalyst is a substance that speeds up a chemical reaction but is not consumed by it. Most solid catalysts are metals or oxides, sulfides and halides of metallic elements and semi-metallic elements such as boron, aluminum and silicon.
2 New Products
The first conference on indigenization of catalysts in the petrochemical and petroleum refining industries was held Thursday and Friday in Kish Island in the Persian Gulf.
During the event organized by the National Petrochemical Company and Sarv Oil and Gas Industries Development Company, two newly indigenized catalysts were unveiled.
The two catalysts, methanol synthesis and low temperature shift catalyst, were previously imported from European companies. After re-imposition of US sanctions in May 2018, the industry faced problems regarding production of certain petrochemicals, Amir Houman Karimi, managing director of Sarv Company and secretary of the conference, said.
“Now, we are self-sufficient in producing these catalysts and have received the technical approval from the Research Institute of Petroleum Industry,” he added.
The two-day meeting sought to create a platform between catalyst producers and consumers and also evaluate the role and performance of home-made catalysts.
Founded in 2004, Sarv Company produces 4,000 tons of catalysts a year used by petrochemical plants, refineries and steel mills.
A knowledge-based private firm, Sarv employs 180 scientists and technical staff for its R&D and catalyst production units.
Domestic petrochemical plants and oil refineries use $400 million worth of catalysts a year, a large part of which is produced locally.
Iranian companies use at least 23,000 tons of catalysts a year of which private companies produce 20,000 tons.
Catalyst consumption is rising and local companies are improving their R&D in the tight race to keep up with the times and not fall behind foreign competitors.