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Dateline: August 9, 2005

Chemical Industy News from the U.S.
Chemical Industry News from India
Technically Speaking

Chemical Industry News from the U.S.

Side-stream filtration recommended for cooling towers

The Department of Energy, Federal Energy Management Program, and an increasing number of Facilities Engineers are recognizing side-stream filtration as the best means for increasing the energy efficiency of cooling tower systems while reducing water costs, maintenance costs and downtime.  They cite that side-stream filtration is particularly helpful if the system is subject to dusty atmospheric conditions and that it can turn a troublesome system into a more trouble-free system.


Plant expansion

Owens Corning is beginning a $25 million expansion of its Aiken, South Carolina manufacturing facility to support the recent launch of a new composite solution.  The expansion will add a third production line for coated glass fiber mat and will employ 25 people.  Startup is scheduled for the second quarter of 2006.  The line will produce a new Owens Corning glass mat facing for G-P Gypsum’s next generation of DensArmor™ Plus, a paperless interior wallboard product.  The panels feature a glass mat facing that finishes like paper-faced wallboard, resulting in the first completely paperless interior wallboard, offering moisture and mold resistance and finishes easily.


Air-separation plant

Air Liquid Large Industries US LP will build a new world-scale air-separation plant near Houston, Texas.  The plant will produce gaseous oxygen, nitrogen and associated liquid products.  It is scheduled to startup in mid-2007 and will be connected to the company’s Gulf Coast pipeline network.


Two new hydro-treating units

Suncor Energy Inc. will expand with two new hydro-treating units, which are being designed by UOP LLC, using its hydroprocessing technology.  One unit will process distillate range feedstock while the other will process gas oil range feedstock.  Capacity will grow to 550,000 barrels/day by 2010 to 2012.



Chemical Industry News from India

Caustic soda expansion

Jayshree Chemicals Ltd. is planning to expand its caustic soda capacity through a 100 tons/day Greenfield expansion project near its existing plant at Ganjam in Orissa.  The expansion will result in a Rs. 100-crore investment.  The total capacity of the Orissa facility will rise to 170 tons/day.


Steel plant investments

A Rs. 28.4 billion investment has been planned for the Durgapur Steel Plant.  Projects for this plan include: installation of a ladle furnace and bloom caster, two medium structural mills, new bar and rod mills, new billet caster, an upgrade to a blast furnace, a rebuild of a coke oven battery and the augmentation of raw material handling.  An investment of Rs. 12.66 billion has been planned for the Salem Steel Plant.  This investment includes steel-making facilities and a new cold rolling mill complex.


New steel production unit

Gangotri Iron & Steel Company Ltd. is proposing to set up a new production facility in Bihar and has begun the preliminary plans.  The project will have a 12 x 12 tons induction furnace along with a continuous cast billet plant with a 300 ton/day Thermex TMT plant for the manufacture of international-quality TMT bars.  The project will be an investment of Rs. 350 million.  Land has been identified and negotiations for acquisition are in progress.


Technically Speaking

What are some of the advantages and disadvantages of cleaning process equipment by cleaning-in-place (CIP)?

Cleaning-in-place (or CIP) is a popular method of cleaning process equipment in many parts of the world.  With the exception of food and pharmaceutical industries, CIP has largely failed to catch on in the United States however.

CIP is a very viable method of cleaning many different types of chemical processing equipment, particularily those with reasonable volumes.

Advantages include:
1.  Repeatable cleaning results
2.  Measurable and recordable cleaning results
3.  Reduced operator exposure to the processing and cleaning fluids.
4.  Decreased cleaning time (in most instances)
5.  Ability to use more agressive cleaning solutions
6.  Reduced equipment wear

Disadvantages include:
1.  Initial capital costs of system
2.  Purchase and disposal of cleaning solutions
3.  Absence of a visual inspection of the internal equipment surfaces


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