LyondellBasell Commissions World's Largest PO TBA Unit

17-Mar-23
LyondellBasell announced it has successfully started up the world's largest propylene oxide (PO) and tertiary butyl alcohol (TBA) unit in Texas. These new assets on the U.S. Gulf Coast have an annual capacity of 470 thousand metric tons of PO and one million metric tons of TBA and its derivatives.
The PO/TBA project is a split facility design, intended to optimize production and leverage synergies shared by the LyondellBasell Channelview Complex located in Channelview, Texas and the LyondellBasell Bayport Complex located in Pasadena, Texas. The 140-acre PO/TBA plant was built at the Channelview Complex, while the associated 34-acre ethers unit, which will convert TBA to oxyfuels, was built at the Bayport Complex.
 
The development of LyondellBasell PO/TBA operations began at the Bayport Complex, with the first PO/TBA unit starting up in 1969. Through 50-plus years of global experience with PO/TBA operations and applying new innovations in yield improvement and PO recovery, the PO/TBA plant at the Channelview Complex is the most energy efficient PO/TBA facility in company history.
 
Propylene Oxide (PO)
PO goes into making polyurethane foam typically used to create mattresses and car and furniture seat cushions. It is also used to make insulation, which can be used to increase the energy efficiency of homes and businesses.
 
Other common end uses for these products include liquid detergents, toothpaste, cosmetics, paints and spandex fabrics.
 
Tertiary Butyl Alcohol (TBA)
TBA is converted to produce two ether-based oxyfuels, methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) and ethyl tertiary butyl ether (ETBE). Both MTBE and ETBE are high-octane fuel additives that help gasoline burn more efficiently, reducing emissions from automobiles.
 
Source: LyondellBasell
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