Ruhr Oel invests millions in modern steam supply system

Gelsenkirchen/Essen – April 4, 2019. Step by step in the coming years, Ruhr Oel GmbH – BP Gelsenkirchen is to modernize the steam supply for its process systems at the Scholven plant. The refinery is to be supported in this venture by STEAG GmbH. The energy supplier, based in Essen, is providing a tailor-made, resource conserving energy plan for the entire refinery site, which ranks among the largest in Europe. The two companies have concluded the corresponding contracts.

In the future, refinery gases will be used to produce process steam and, to a lesser extent, electricity for the plant's own consumption. As an EPC contractor, STEAG is to engineer, construct and commission the new steam supply system by 2021. The preparatory measures are already in full swing and construction work is scheduled to start at what is one of the largest refinery sites in Europe by the middle of the year.

The current project is part of a two billion euro modernization program that will make the Gelsenkirchen refinery fit for the future over the next ten years. "Our aim is to secure jobs in the long term through safe and environmentally compatible action and high profitability. The investment in a modern steam supply system is an important step in this direction," says refinery manager Nick Spencer.

The contract with STEAG covers a project worth hundreds of millions. "We are delighted by the great confidence that Ruhr Oel has placed in us with this order," says Joachim Rumstadt, Chairman of the Board of Management of STEAG GmbH. The future steam supply at the Scholven site will be provided by four ultra-modern, state of the art steam boilers, which will be erected on the refinery site. 

Steam is a very important utility in a refinery. It is either produced locally by heating water in steam boilers or imported via steam pipelines, for example from power plants. This steam is then made available to the refinery process. In separation columns, the hydrocarbon mixture is heated with the steam to such an extent that a certain proportion becomes gaseous and can thus be separated from the solid materials.

The new, energy-efficient boilers will be manufactured by Standardkessel Baumgarte GmbH in Duisburg. The main fuel to be used for steam generation is the refinery gas produced at the site. As a result of this energy recovery, it will be possible to reduce the amount of flaring required for safety reasons - for example during start-up and shut-down of refinery production facilities. At the same time, the new energy-efficient steam boilers will replace the steam supply from the neighboring hard coal fired power plant, which had been in place for decades. A further advantage is the significant reduction in emissions.

Background

With around 1,900 employees and 170 trainees, BP operates the two plants in the Horst and Scholven districts of Gelsenkirchen as an integrated and complex refinery and petrochemicals site. The processing capacity is approximately twelve million metric tons of crude oil per year. In addition to gasoline, diesel oil, jet fuel and heating oil, this results in more than 50 different products, primarily for the chemical industry.

STEAG has stood for efficient and secure energy supply for more than 80 years, both in Germany and abroad. As an experienced partner, the Essen-based company supports its customers comprehensively during all phases of energy supply. STEAG designs, develops, implements and operates highly efficient power plants and markets their by-products. In addition to customized electricity and heat supply solutions, STEAG offers a wide range of energy and engineering services.