MOSCOW (MRC) -- UOP LLC, a Honeywell company, has announced that Japan's Taiyo Oil Co. Ltd. has begun producing petrochemicals with UOP's Tatoray process technology, which provides greater flexibility to produce either gasoline or valuable petrochemicals as demand changes, reported Plastemart.
Taiyo Oil licensed the process technology from UOP in 2013 for its Shikoku Operations in Japan. The new unit started production late last year and met all of its performance guarantees two weeks after start-up.
The Tatoray process substantially increases production of benzene and xylenes, which are used to produce polymers and plastics.
"With domestic gasoline demand declining, Japan has become the world leader in reallocating feedstocks, such as naphtha, from making motor fuels to producing in-demand petrochemicals, making Japan one of the largest exporters of components used to make paraxylene," said Pete Piotrowski, senior vice president and general manager of UOP's Process Technology and Equipment business unit. "The Tatoray process can more than double the production of mixed xylenes, while significantly reducing the cost of production, making it one of the most economical ways to increase yields of xylenes and benzene." Before Taiyo began using the Tatoray process, the plant used UOP Thermal Hydro-Dealkylation (THDA) technology to convert less valuable, heavy aromatics to benzene, which is used to make plastics and detergents.
As MRC wrote previously, Taiyo Petrochemical is likely to shut its styrene monomer (SM) plant for maintenance turnaround in October 2015. It is expected to remain shut for around one month. Located at Ube in Japan, the plant has a production capacity of 370,000 mt/year.