The Golden Triangle is an integrated polymers facility being developed in Orange County, Texas in the US.

The facility will be owned by Golden Triangle Polymers Company, a joint venture between QatarEnergy (49%) and Chevron Phillips Chemical Company (CPChem) (51%).

The companies took the Final Investment Decision (FID) for the project in November 2022. It will entail an investment of $8.5bn.

In the US, Golden Triangle Polymers Plant represents the second largest investment by QatarEnergy after $11bn (100% basis) investment in the Golden Pass LNG Production and Export Facility, which is slated to commence operation in late 2024.

The Golden Triangle Polymers Plant is expected to commence operations in 2026. Once complete, it will become one of the largest integrated polymers facilities in the world.

A joint venture of QatarEnergy and CPChem is also developing the Ras Laffan Petrochemical Complex in Qatar.

Location details

The Golden Triangle plant will be located about 180km (113 miles) east of Houston in Orange County in Texas, the US.

The site is in the Texas Gulf Coast Area near Chevron Phillips Chemical’s existing facility in Orange.

Golden Triangle Polymers Plant details

The Golden Triangle Polymers Plant will consist of an ethylene cracker unit with a processing capacity of 2.08 million tonnes per annum (mtpa).

The plant will also house two high-density polyethylene units with a combined capacity of 2mtpa.

After commencing operation, the integrated polymer plant will produce Marlex polyethylene.

Polyethylene is used to produce durable goods such as pipes for natural gas and water delivery. It is also used in making recreational products like kayaks and coolers, and in food and medical packaging.

The plant will primarily supply polyethylene to Asia, Latin America and Europe.

The facility is expected to create around 4,500 construction jobs and more than 500 full time jobs.

QatarEnergy estimates that the plant will generate nearly $50bn of net economic impact over 20 years benefitting the local community.

CPChem will be responsible for the engineering, procurement and construction of the project. The company will also operate the facility after start-up.

Contractors involved

ZDJV, a joint venture between Zachry Industrial (Zachry Group) and DL USA, was contracted for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) of the polyethylene units.

In December 2022, Technip Energies secured the contract to supply cracking furnaces for the ethane cracker of the Golden Triangle Polymers project. The contract was awarded after CPChem and QatarEnergy selected Technip’s proprietary ethylene technology and successful completion of the ethylene licence and Process Design Package (PDP).

The contract represents revenue of more than €250m for Technip Energies.

Technip Energies’ Stone & Weber Process Technology will be responsible for the furnace portion of the ethane cracker.

PCL Industrial Construction was selected as a key construction contractor for the polymer plant. The company will construct seven Technip 48M cracking furnaces including structural steel, module fabrication, mechanical, piping, electrical, instrumentation and pre-commissioning works.

In March 2023, technology and software company Emerson announced that it will provide automation technologies, software, and analytics from its Plantweb digital ecosystem for the integrated polymers facility.

A joint venture between Burns & McDonnell Engineering Company and Zachry Industrial, BMZ Third Coast Partners, will provide infrastructure and utilities services.

JGC America and Kiewit Energy joint venture, JKJV, was awarded an EPC contract for the additional portions of the ethane cracker.

WT Byler is delivering and managing heavy civil works and EPC works for a rail and storage-in-transit yard for the project.

Scallon Controls is one of the suppliers of the project.

Key technologies to be used at Golden Triangle Plant

The Golden Triangle Polymers Project will generate 25% lower greenhouse gas emissions compared to similar facilities in Europe and the US.

The Emerson-supplied integrated process control and safety systems will utilise advanced predictive technologies to minimise operational complexities and risks through DeltaV distributed control and safety instrumented systems, and Rosemount gas analyzer and chromatograph solutions.

For operator training, energy management, safety analysis and operational optimisation, the project will leverage Emerson’s Mimic and AspenTech HYSYS simulation software.

The plant will also use AgileOps operations management software and alarm management services.