SABIC, BASF, Linde launch world's first electric cracker heating plant

(MENAFN) In a collaborative effort, SABIC, BASF, and Linde have unveiled the world's inaugural pilot plant for large-scale cracking furnaces powered by electrical heating. Following three years of intensive development, engineering, and construction endeavors, the joint statement announced the readiness of the pilot plant to commence regular operations. Situated at BASF's Verbund site in Ludwigshafen, Germany, this milestone marks a significant advancement in sustainable chemical production.

The genesis of this pioneering initiative traces back to March 2021 when the three industry giants inked a joint agreement to conceptualize and trial electrically heated cracking furnace solutions. Recognizing the critical role played by cracking units in the production of basic chemicals, the collaboration sought to revolutionize conventional practices by harnessing electricity as a primary heat source.

Traditionally, the cracking process involves subjecting hydrocarbons to high temperatures, typically around 850 degrees Celsius, within furnaces fueled by conventional energy sources. However, the advent of electrically heated furnaces presents a paradigm shift in the realm of chemical manufacturing. By leveraging renewable energy sources, the pilot plant aims to demonstrate the feasibility of continuous olefin production while substantially reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

The innovative technology holds the promise of slashing emissions from one of the chemical industry's most energy-intensive processes by a remarkable 90 percent compared to prevailing methodologies. This bold step underscores the commitment of SABIC, BASF, and Linde to sustainability and environmental stewardship, aligning with broader industry efforts to mitigate climate change and transition towards greener practices. As the pilot plant embarks on its operational journey, it symbolizes a pivotal milestone in the quest for cleaner, more sustainable chemical production methods.



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