Sasol-Huntsman GmbH & Co. KG, a 50/50 joint venture between affiliates of Huntsman Corporation and Sasol Limited located in Moers, Germany, plans to pursue the expansion of its maleic anhydride manufacturing capacity by 45,000 tons, increasing capacity to 105,000 tons. The new capacity, which is expected to be on-line in Q1-2011, will increase Sasol-Huntsman's production capacity by 75%. The expansion will be funded by the joint venture's internal cash flow and its non-recourse financing. The JV will construct a second world scale 45,000 ton reactor and purification section on the same site as the existing plant. However, the new reactor and purification section will be operated independently from the existing plant to ensure continuous product flow without production interruption, even during scheduled T & I shutdowns and catalyst re-packs. Basic engineering and site preparation are complete. The reactor and selected other major equipment are scheduled to be ordered in early May, and the EPCM contract to be awarded in June. The expanded plant will make use of the infrastructure on the Sasol Solvents Moers site, providing synergies for the Sasol-Huntsman joint venture as well as for Sasol.
The new plant's design is similar to Huntsman's 45,000 ton plant under construction in Geismar (USA), which is expected to be operational in late 2008.