Showing posts with label aramco bitumen. Show all posts
Showing posts with label aramco bitumen. Show all posts

February 6, 2012

Italy's Woes over Iran's Fuel Supply Cut


The European Union (EU) sanctions on imports of petroleum from Iran over the country's peaceful nuclear program can lead to the closure of Italian oil refineries, European oil industry sources say.

"Some Italian refineries are heavily dependent on Iranian crude and need to secure alternative supplies urgently... or they will run into serious difficulties," said Piero de Simone, director of Italy's oil industry organization.

According to analysts, at least five of Italy's oil-refining plants are making losses while the small refiners that rely on Iran's relatively cheap heavy oil to produce asphalt and bitumen are among the most vulnerable.

"This is why I am so angry. These EU sanctions are weakening Mediterranean refiners more than the Iranians," said an executive from a European refiner.

"The US and the UK play the tough guys, but we have to pay the consequences," he added.

On January 23, EU foreign ministers imposed new sanctions on Iran which include a ban on purchasing oil from the country, a freeze on the assets of Iran's Central Bank within the EU, and a ban on the sale of diamonds, gold and other precious metals to Iran.

Earlier on December 31, 2011, US President Barack Obama signed into law new sanctions against the Islamic Republic and announced that the United States would begin penalizing other countries for importing Iranian oil or conducting transactions with the country's central bank.

The United States, Israel and some of their allies accuse Tehran of pursuing military objectives in its nuclear program and have used this pretext to impose four rounds of UN Security Council embargos against Iran.

Iran, however, has refuted the allegations, arguing that as a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Tehran has every right to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.

MAB/MA
Source-  http://presstv.com/detail/224588.html

July 23, 2008

Hot Asphalt Storage

BG Europa of Wickhambrook has recently installed an FMA Ullrich Hot Asphalt storage extension to existing Sherwin silos at the Lafarge Ashbury Depot in Manchester.

A two compartment SE120/2 with a total storage capacity of 120 tons split equally between the two bins has been installed to the end of the three existing silos. A 37Kw frequency controlled winch along with a complete track replacement completed the installation.

The speed of the skip is controlled through an invertor to ensure rapid transit along the track and gentle arrival at the charging and discharge points with rope stretch accounted for by the continual reset of the skip reference point on each journey. A tacho -generator ensures that skip positioning during operation is accurate to 10mm; as this system does not require limit switches at the skip charging and discharging points, maintenance issues are therefore reduced.

The new bottom discharge skip has a capacity of 2000kg and is lined with stainless steel to promote clean operation. The skip system can operate at 140 tph with a 52 second cycle time to the furthest bin which represents a significant improvement in skip performance.

The FMA Ullrich UCC5 skip controls feature an energy saving mode which matches skip performance to batch plant output. The speed of the skip is automatically controlled to ensure that it returns to the mixer at the time required for batch discharge, eliminating excessive power usage by unnecessarily accelerating the skip.

As the low level Parker Batch Tower at Ashbury does not allow vehicles to be loaded directly it was imperative that the project was completed during the programmed shutdown period. BG Europa successfully ensured full plant production was achieved on the programmed date with minimal disruption to the established Lafarge customer base.

Joan Hughes, Manager of the Ashbury depot, commented, "We were very pleased at how safe the work was completed onsite. During and after commissioning we had very few teething problems. The new skip system has improved our production rate, and reduced down time. The Hot Storage has given us more flexibility so that we meet our customer needs better."

The Ashbury project represents the first BG Europa - Ullrich hot storage installation for Lafarge in 2008. A second installation is planned for the Lafarge Ackworth depot where an S200/4 II will provide 200 tons of storage in a total of four bins; two at 53 tons and two at 47 tons. The S200/4 II parallel storage silo offers a versatile compact storage solution where space and site layout can prelude alternative arrangements. The Ackworth S200/4 will be the third such system operated by Lafarge with the others at Mountsorrel and Hafod Quarries. BG Europa of Wickhambrook has recently installed an extension to existing Sherwin silos at the Lafarge Ashbury Depot in Manchester.

A two compartment SE120/2 with a total storage capacity of 120 tons split equally between the two bins has been installed to the end of the three existing silos. A 37Kw frequency controlled winch along with a complete track replacement completed the installation.

The speed of the skip is controlled through an invertor to ensure rapid transit along the track and gentle arrival at the charging and discharge points with rope stretch accounted for by the continual reset of the skip reference point on each journey. A tacho -generator ensures that skip positioning during operation is accurate to 10mm; as this system does not require limit switches at the skip charging and discharging points, maintenance issues are therefore reduced.

The new bottom discharge skip has a capacity of 2000kg and is lined with stainless steel to promote clean operation. The skip system can operate at 140 tph with a 52 second cycle time to the furthest bin which represents a significant improvement in skip performance.

The FMA Ullrich UCC5 skip controls feature an energy saving mode which matches skip performance to batch plant output. The speed of the skip is automatically controlled to ensure that it returns to the mixer at the time required for batch discharge, eliminating excessive power usage by unnecessarily accelerating the skip.

As the low level Parker Batch Tower at Ashbury does not allow vehicles to be loaded directly it was imperative that the project was completed during the programmed shutdown period. BG Europa successfully ensured full plant production was achieved on the programmed date with minimal disruption to the established Lafarge customer base.

Joan Hughes, Manager of the Ashbury depot, commented, "We were very pleased at how safe the work was completed onsite. During and after commissioning we had very few teething problems. The new skip system has improved our production rate, and reduced down time. The Hot Storage has given us more flexibility so that we meet our customer needs better."

The Ashbury project represents the first BG Europa - Ullrich hot storage installation for Lafarge in 2008. A second installation is planned for the Lafarge Ackworth depot where an S200/4 II will provide 200 tons of storage in a total of four bins; two at 53 tons and two at 47 tons. The S200/4 II parallel storage silo offers a versatile compact storage solution where space and site layout can prelude alternative arrangements. The Ackworth S200/4 will be the third such system operated by Lafarge with the others at Mountsorrel and Hafod Quarries.

July 6, 2008

Bitumen Standards


This article attempts to have a re-look at a comparitive study of bitumen standards acorss Asia and the key differences in evaluation to suit the local needs.

Most of the bitumen producing nations including Saudi Arabia, Thailand, Singapore, Iran, Malaysia and Newzeland in Asia uses the penetration test (ASTM D-5) ( as specified by TNZ/M/1 in Newzeland's standards) as against their Australian counterparts who uses the viscosity of the bitumen to define the grades of bitumen. This has given rise to difference in manufacturing standards between the rest of it's neighbors.

Grades as per D-5, carried out under laboratory conditions at 25 deg C to determine the depth that a weighted needle skins into bitumen specimen over 5 seconds. Thus the higher the grade, the softer the bitumen. It is measured in tenths of a millimeter. 60/70 grade has a depth of penetration between 6 & 7 millimeters.

This test, although look crude, is still internationally used as it serves as a reference point to compare the property of the bitumen at higher temperatures and it’s consistency with regards to Softening point and viscosity.

with reference to it’s physical characteristics, simply at the ambient temperature, are graded as

180/200 Softer Sealing
130/150 Soft Sealing
80/100 Hard Hot mix Asphalt binder, sealing
60/70 Harder Hot mix Asphalt binder

Most of the nations like Newzeland has one or more than one refinery , which cannot cater to their local demand, the additional requirements for the road construction are being imported.

Australian Bitumen

Australia uses the viscosity of the bitumen to define the grades of bitumen. This is in total contrast with the simple and internationally followed standard of Penetration test per ASTM D-5 .

To comply with AS 2008, the viscosity of the bitumen is tested at 60 deg C to define the four grade of bitumen used for pavement construction.


Grade Viscosity International Character Application
Class 50 40-60 No Equivalent Softer Sealing
Class 170 140-200 80/100 Soft Sealing
Class 320 260-380 60/70 Hard Hot mix Asphalt , sealing
Class 600 500-700 40/50 Harder Hot mix Asphalt

Viscosity is basically a measure of consistency and higher the viscosity , the harder the bitumen gets.


The advantages of using Viscosity over the Penetration tests are

• Viscosity is independent of the test system and the sample size.
• At 60 deg C, the testing range is close the pavement temperature
• Comparative studies of viscosity over a range from 60-150 deg C yields the bitumen’s temperature susceptibility.

Resources
http://www.benzeneinternational.com

June 30, 2008

Bitumen Supply & Demand

The Soaring Oil prices although justifies the fluctuation in the pricing of bitumen, there is not an established mechanism to derive the bitumen price till date. The bitumen market is getting mature and liquid. The majority of the exporting nations include Singapore, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Thailand in this region has different inputs and the range varies significantly.

Recently the Cartel led by Shell was exposed by the European regulators and the was fined to the tune of price fixing on various petroleum products.

For Bitumen, there are no posted prices except for some compiled prices from some paid subscription services ; marketers rely on a number of pricing formulas that reference various posted crude qualities.

Market pricing is seasonal with higher prices during peak season like summer being the norm due to higher demand for bitumen and other bitumen derived products.

Saudi arabia has almost banned the export of Bitumen 60/70 , which considered as the raw material, obtained from the fractional distillation process, from Saudi Aramco . The penetration grade bitumen 80/100, prepared from the aforesaid raw material by adding additives, is the value added , before being exported. The price sensitive Saudi bitumen industry, an unorganized industry, commands the most market value among the third world countries including India, Pakistan and Bagladesh.

On the Other hand, Iran is trying to sell the bitumen through Iran Mercantile Exchange, as a commodity and the pricing currency is being slowly shifting in favrour of Euro.

Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, although except for Singapore, the rest of the regional economies , being net importer, the pricing is closely followed with each other, and which is not affordable for re-export for the developing nations.

June 20, 2008

Iran in Sri Lanka- for Business

Iran's President Ahmadinejad (l) and his Sri Lankan counterpart, Mahinda Rajapaksa
Iran is to modernize Sri Lanka's Sapugaskanda oil refinery in a bid to double the capacity of the island nation's sole refining complex.

Iran would help expand the capacity of the south Asian nation's oil refinery to 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) from the current 50,000 bpd within the next four or five years.

According to an agreement signed between Iran and Sri Lanka during the visit of the Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Tehran will take 12 percent of the refinery's profit once it has been modernized.

The project, once completed, will reportedly make Sri Lanka self-sufficient in aviation fuel and bitumen (tar).

Tehran and Colombo signed four economic cooperation agreements to improve the south Asian nation's infrastructure Monday.

Iran has promised to provide $1.9 billion in loans and grants to Sri Lanka to help the country expand its only oil refinery, develop Uma Oya hydroelectricity and irrigation project and buy Iranian oil, the Sri Lankan government said.


June 18, 2008

Bitumen Emulsions

Bitumen Emulsions

Bitumen emulsion is a combination of three basic ingredients, Bitumen, water, and small amount of an emulsifying agent. These ingredients are introduced into a process which shears the bitumen into tiny droplets. The emulsifier, which is a surface-active agent, keeps the Bitumen droplets in a stable suspension and controls the breaking time. The final product is a liquid product with a consistency ranging from that of milk to heavy cream and can be used in cold processes for road construction and maintenance.

Advantages of Bitumen emulsions

Bitumen emulsion does not require a petroleum solvent to make it liquid and in most cases Bitumen emulsions can be used without additional heat. Both of these factors contribute to energy savings. Additionally, Bitumen emulsions offer great flexibility in their application since they offer the end-user a great variety of characteristics not found in other paving and maintenance materials. Bitumen emulsions are environmentally friendly. There are little or no hydrocarbon emissions created with their use.

History of Bitumen emulsions

Bitumen emulsions were first prepared in the early part of the 20th century and today they are used all over the world. The use of Bitumen emulsions is growing and 10-20% of all Bitumen is used in the form of Bitumen emulsions.

Classification of Bitumen emulsions

Bitumen emulsions are classified into three categories;

  • Anionic
  • Cationic and
  • Nonionic


The anionic and cationic classes refer to the electrical charges surrounding the Bitumen particles. The absence of the letter "C" denotes anionic emulsions.


Bitumen emulsions are further classified on the basis of how quickly they coalesce; i.e., revert to Bitumen cement.

RS (Rapid Set),

MS (Medium Set), SS (slow set), and

QS (Quick Set)

have been adopted to simplify and standardize this classification.

Additionally, trailing numbers are used to delineate the relative viscosity if the emulsion and the letters "h" and "s" indicate whether a hard or soft base Bitumen is used to make the Bitumen emulsions.

Thus, a CSS-1h is a cationic slow set emulsion with a relatively low Bitumen emulsion viscosity made with a hard base Bitumen.

June 15, 2008

Arabian Crude Reached Chian

The first cargo of Arabian crude arrived at the new Sinopec Qingdao Refinery on May 18.

 
 Saudi Petroleum Ltd., Huangdao Terminal, and Sinopec Qingdao Refining and Chemical Co. Ltd. officials gather at the terminal for a photo to mark the first delivery of Arabian crude for the Qingdao Refinery.
  
 
 Mohammed S. Al-Madi shakes hands with Liu Guangwei, supervisor of the terminal where the first Saudi crude arrived for the Qingdao Refinery.
The 2-million-barrel cargo of Arabian Medium and Arabian Heavy crude was carried by the tanker Xin An Yang from Ras Tanura.

A team from Saudi Petroleum Ltd. (SPL)-Beijing, led by regional vice president and chief representative Mohammed S. Al-Madi, was on hand to establish a closer relationship with Qingdao refinery and celebrate the first delivery of Arabian crude oil in Huangdao terminal.

The SPL team met with refinery officials, led by Li Zhenmin, vice president of Sinopec Qingdao Refining and Chemical Co. Ltd. Li welcomed the team and then explained the construction, refining configuration and capacity of the new grass-roots refinery.

Al-Madi reiterated Saudi Aramco’s commitment to the Chinese market and said he hoped the visit would strengthen the relationship between Saudi Aramco and Sinopec.

After the meeting, the SPL team toured plant facilities. Qingdao Refinery has 16 key refining units, including a 200,000-barrel-per-day crude distillation unit, a 22,000-bpd continuous reformer, a 133,000-bpd hydrocracker, an 83,000-bpd hydrorefining unit for kerosene and gas-oil, a 100,000-bpd residual oil hydrotreater and 220,000-metric-ton-per-year sulfur recovery unit. The refinery, with total investment of $1.79 billion, will begin commercial operations in June after two months of test runs.

The refinery is designed to process 50 percent Arabian Light and 50 percent Arabian Heavy crude. It is capable of producing Euro-III-equivalent oil products and will mainly serve the North China market. 

June 12, 2008

Bitumen or Concrete.. Closing the Gap


The steady price uptrend in global petroleum and petroleum products has put immense pressure on the road building sector, with the price differential between concrete and bitumen roads narrowing from 60% to 20% now.

Bitumen prices, entirely determined by the oil companies, have gone up by 20% per tonne over the last one-year. Bitumen, a byproduct of petroleum, accounts for 15-20% of the cost of a highway project.

According to Samiran Sen, vice-president of the Indian Roads Congress (IRC), the cost for a two-lane bitumen road is more than Rs 5 crore per kilometre. "The impact of today's price hike on bitumen prices would be around 2-3%. But the cascading effect is larger," he said.

Typically the investment of a two-lane, 10 metre wide road with --- sub-base, sub-grade, water bound macadam (WBM), bitumen macadam (BM), premixed carpet and seal coating ---- ranges from Rs 5 crore to Rs 7 crore per km, depending on the terrain character.

"Even a few years before the cost of building a concrete road was almost 60% higher than that of a bitumen road. States preferred building bitumen road even if the life span of a concrete road is much higher," he said.

According to him, a concrete road now 20-25% more expensive than a bitumen road.

Kshiti Goswami, West Bengal's PWD minister said, it is becoming difficult for the states to construct bitumen road. It seems that we would have to shift towards constructing concrete roads even when the price of cement is also appreciating."

Present at a press conference to announce the 69th Indian Roads Congress, a think-tank organisation under ministry of Road Transport and Highways, in Kolkata, he said the cost bitumen has increased by almost Rs 3,000 per tonne recently.

PK Deb, vice-president of the IRC, said that, with the increase in input costs, governments are being forced to look for alternative measures to fund the roads projects.

According to S.K. Hamirwasia, vice-president (infrastructure) of Subhash Projects & Marketing Ltd, the cost of projects will increase by 1% taking into account only the petrol & diesel price hike.


Source -Financial Express

June 11, 2008

Shipping cost


Per day rate for a supertanker was less than USD 30,000 on April 24,2008 costs around USD 119.500 toady. Soaring Bukner fuel prices, short of vessels and other geo-political tensions adds to woe.

We are looking for a chartered bitumen tanker and are unable to find one to ship our cargo on the last month quoted rates. However, we are still delivering , at any cost to the customers.

June 9, 2008

Saudi Aramco has increased the price for June Shipment

The recent hike in crude oil prices has an impact on all petroleum derivatives as well. The World's largest refiner and crude supplier has raised the prices for the June shipment according to Bloomberg.

Saudi Aramco has raised prices of cargoes loading in June to a record price, . Propane has been raised 6% from last month to to $895 a metric ton, while Butane has risen 7% to $920 a ton. The price increases come after crude oil costs rose to record highs last month.

Following the above, the cost of bitumen, may subject to rise.

Source - ameinfo.com