Acron Group is ramping up output at its Veliky Novgorod facility’s Ammonia-4 unit to 2,500 tonnes per day, 21% above its design capacity. Investments in the project will total USD 34 million.
The main equipment – a heat exchange reformer (HTER) built based on technology from the Danish company Haldor Topsoe – has been installed at the production site. The HTER, which weighs approximately 180 tonnes and stands 18 metres tall, with a diameter of almost 4 metres, will consume up to 20% of the gas feedstock and significantly increase the productivity of the shop’s conversion department. This type of equipment has been used by the industry globally for over 15 years and proved to be effective, with a long service life.
As part of the project, two cooling towers, additional air coolers, new heat exchange equipment, and a production ammonia pump have also been assembled. The boiler was adjusted to improve its energy efficiency.
Launching operations for the upgraded Ammonia-4 unit are scheduled for late 2020 and will be aligned with the unit’s first overhaul, which is on a four-year turnaround cycle. With the completion of the upgrades, Ammonia-4 unit’s output will increase to 900,000 tonnes per annum and total ammonia output at the Novgorod-based facility will increase to 2.2 million tonnes per annum.
Chairman of Acron Group’s Board of Directors Alexander Popov sees this upgrades in a broader context. “Augmenting capacity at Ammonia-4 is an important part of our investment programme. This increase in output will help significantly expand nitrogen fertiliser and NPK output at Acron’s facility in Veliky Novgorod”.
Acron’s Ammonia-4 unit is one of the largest ammonia units in Europe. It is the most significant investment project of recent decades at the Veliky Novgorod facility and the first ammonia unit since the breakup of the Soviet Union constructed by Russian experts without outsourcing foreign workforce and based on design documentation drafted by the Russian design institute Novgorodsky GIAP. Russian President Vladimir Putin attended the commissioning ceremony for Ammonia-4 in 2016. Project investments totalled approximately USD 500 million.