New NPK Pilot Plant Up & Running

By Joseph R. Fonseca
Monday, August 11, 2014
NPK pilot plant

 

A new NPK pilot plant at the Innovation and R&D Center in Porsgrunn has been successfully in operation since this spring.

Yara’s Innovation and R&D department has been quite busy lately. In an effort to continuously improve Yara’s operations and processes, Yara’s research center in Porsgrunn, Norway, has successfully initiated a new NPK pilot plant. It’s designed to improve operations significantly while providing more flexibility.

“Mother liquor”

"The NPK pilot has been in continuous operation since start-up," Sten Bjørneboe, responsible for Yara’s plant operations, says. "Although there are still some teething problems left to deal with -- which is to be expected with such a complex pilot plant -- it is already working very well, and we are really satisfied with its flexibility."

The new facility is actually a kind of "mini-plant" for NPK production, based upon the so-called nitrophosphate process that Yara utilizes to produce finished fertilizers in its facilities at Porsgrunn and further north in Glomfjord, Norway.

"The nitrophosphate process consists of a number of process steps," Kari-Anne Leth-Olsen, head of Yara’s P/NPK department, explains. "First: Digestion, where phosphate rock is dissolved in nitric acid to create 'digestion liquor.' Second, there’s Crystallization, where this liquor is cooled, creating calcium nitrate, which is then separated out.

"The phosphorous-containing liquor, which is called ‘mother liquor,’ is brought to the next step. Ammonia is added in step three, Neutralization. During this step, what we call ‘NP liquor’ is created," she adds.

Replacing old hardware


"The new pilot plant gives us the possibility to produce NP liquor from nitric acid, phosphate rock and ammonia, and represents a big improvement over the previous NPK pilot plant," Rob Louwe, a Yara R&D employee who was responsible for the building of the pilot plant, explains. "Although some improvements were made over the years, a lot of (the plant’s) hardware dated back to the ‘50s and ‘60s. Operating the old plant was almost entirely manual."

The new facility uses mostly brand new equipment, much of which can be operated from a new steering and control system. A new cooling system for the crystallization phase has been included. It uses a novel refrigerant liquid that can cool the mother liquor down to at least -20°C. A dedicated two-step gas-scrubbing system is also included to comply with emissions regulations.

"We have already started to see the benefit of having such a flexible pilot plant in our innovation projects," Kari-Anne says. "This investment will help us test and solve some of our challenges of improving existing processes and also evaluate the effect of using new raw materials in our plants."

"We hope that Yara's NPK plants will benefit from using this pilot facility to evaluate new process parameters and also for troubleshooting and raw materials investigations."

Maritime Reporter November 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Energy

Rig Moves: Mobilized for Performance

The operation of an oil field involves moving rigs or jackups in a maneuver referred to as a rig move. These complex operations require experience and the coordination of all stakeholders.

FPSO Trio Receives Side Shell Protection

SPS Overlay has yet again been used for side impact protection on three FPSOs for a major player in the offshore industry. The work was carried out at Enseada do Paraguaçu S.

INTERTANKO Launches ECA Bunker Surcharge Clauses

INTERTANKO’s documentary committee has launched bunker surcharge clauses for Emission Control Areas (ECA).   Rising bunker prices due to rising oil prices and

News

Damen Responds to Evolving Fishing Practices

Maaskant Shipyards Stellendam meets fishing sector’s growing needs by performing electric pulse fishing conversions   As European fishing policies evolve, so fishing techniques advance.

Maaskant Shipyards Earns ISO 9001:2008 Certificate

Maaskant Shipyards (Stellendam), part of Damen Shipyards Group, has received certification from Bureau Veritas for aligning its quality and management systems with

Duffy Named President of Carnival Cruise Line

Christine Duffy has been named president of Carnival Cruise Line, Carnival Corporation & plc. announced today.   Duffy, currently president and CEO of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA),

Mergers & Acquisitions

Vard Wins Farstad's OSCV Contract

Vard Holdings Limited (“VARD”) has secured a contract for the design and construction of one Offshore Subsea Construction Vessel (“OSCV”) for Farstad Shipping (“Farstad”).

CSL St-Laurent on Maiden Voyage

The second of Canada Steamship Lines' (CSL) two newbuild Trillium Class Great Lakes bulk carriers, CSL St-Laurent, was delivered on November 26, 2014 and set

Wärtsilä Acquires L-3 Marine Systems International

Wärtsilä Corporation is to acquire L-3 Marine Systems International from NYSE-listed L-3 Communications Holdings Inc. L-3 Marine Systems International (L-3 MSI)

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Maritime Standards Navigation Pod Propulsion Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1837 sec (5 req/sec)