Honeywell International subsidiary UOP said that HC Petrochem has selected UOP to provide technology for an expansion of its petrochemicals plant in Daesan, South Korea.

HC Petrochem will use the UOP Parex process and the UOP Isomar process to help triple production of high-purity para-xylene to support growing, long-term demand for petrochemicals globally.

The company said that Para-xylene is a key ingredient in the production of purified terephthalic acid (PTA), which is used to make polyester for fabric and polyethylene terephthalate (PET) chips for carbonated soft drink and water bottles.

The basic engineering design of the plant has commenced and start-up is projected for the second half of 2013.

HC Petrochem plans to expand production of para-xylene from 380,000 metric tons per annum to 1,180,000 metric tons per annum.

The new Parex and Isomar process units will use mixed xylene as feedstock supplementing the existing UOP CCR Platforming, Sulfolane, Tatoray, Isomar and Parex process units at the plant to expand the production.

Hyundai Oilbank, a petrochemicals and refinery company headquartered in Seoul, South Korea, and Cosmo Oil, a petroleum and petrochemicals company headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, established HC Petrochem as a 50-50 joint venture in November 2009.