Fluor and TechnipFMC have completed their engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) services scope of work on the $11.8bn Sasol ethane cracker and derivatives project in Westlake, Louisiana.


Image: Sasol ethane cracker and derivatives project. Photo: courtesy of Business Wire.

The joint venture (JV) of Fluor and TechnipFMC was selected as the primary EPCM contractor for the ethane cracker and derivatives project by Sasol. Prior to the contract, Fluor was responsible for the front-end engineering and design for the project.

The new ethane cracker and derivatives project has been built near Sasol’s existing petrochemical facility in Southwest Louisiana.

The project primarily involved construction of a 1.5 million tons-per-year ethane cracker, which is integrated with TechnipFMC’s ethylene technology.

Also part of the project are six downstream derivatives units and associated utilities, offsites along with other infrastructure work.

Fluor and TechnipFMC said that they will continue to assist Sasol team with remaining activities by working on transition plans for all the units and systems of the petrochemical project. The joint venture team will also help the South African chemical company in performance testing for the complex.

Since November 2018, the joint venture commenced incremental transitions of assets to Sasol after completion of each unit or system. Fluor said that while all units have been transitioned to Sasol, a low-density polyethylene unit will be delivered by the end of this month.

The company said that the first steam was achieved by the project in August 2018. By the end of November 2018, utilities to support the early process units entered into full operations while the linear low-density polyethylene plant achieved beneficial operations in February 2019.

Over 6,000 staff and craft were involved at the peak stage of the construction on the ethane cracker and derivatives project. The petrochemical complex will convert the ethylene produced by the ethane cracker to manufacture high-value chemicals for everyday use as consumer products.

Fluor Americas energy & chemicals business president Mark Fields said: “This milestone is the culmination of nearly seven years of hard work by Fluor’s project team and we are proud to have successfully delivered our scope.

“We brought our extensive U.S. Gulf Coast construction and megaproject expertise using our integrated solutions approach, and we are proud of the lasting positive impact this project will have on Southwest Louisiana.”