Worlds first modular AN plant from Orica and Yara in Western Australia

first_imgThe next generation of downstream processing has arrived in the resource rich Pilbara region of Western Australia with the official opening of the Yara Pilbara Nitrates technical ammonium nitrate (TAN) manufacturing plant. The plant, developed in joint venture by Orica Ltd and Yara International ASA, will have capacity to produce 330,000 t/y of ammonium nitrate (AN). Ammonium nitrate is the main component of explosives used in the mining, quarrying and construction industries. The plant is currently in the commissioning phase and is expected to be operational by the end of 2016.The Orica and Yara joint venture facility was opened today by Western Australian Premier Colin Barnett at a ceremony marking the completion of the plant construction phase. The plant is fully integrated with the neighbouring Yara Pilbara Fertilisers ammonia plant, which exports 800,000 t/y of ammonia to world markets. Orica CEO Alberto Calderon said the plant was strategically located in one of the world’s great mining regions. “Ideally situated in the Pilbara, the plant will deliver a local source of ammonium nitrate, improve Orica’s overall responsiveness to customers’ needs, and deliver increased security of supply for our customers across the region. Ammonium nitrate from the plant will underpin predicted growth across the Pilbara mining sector. As such, this is a strategic, long term investment for Orica.”Yara International President and CEO Svein Tore Holsether said the completion of the world-scale plant was an exciting development in the company’s growth strategy and investment inAustralia. “Yara’s decision to go further downstream into AN production in the Pilbara reflects the long term value we see for our business in Australia and also the proximity of both Yara Pilbaraoperations to important Asia Pacific markets,” Holsether said. “We are using Western Australian gas to first create a highly valued product, ammonia, and then undertake further processing to deliver a crucial material for the mining and civil works sector.” As part of the joint venture Yara will operate the plant and Orica will manage sales and distribution of the product.The Yara Pilbara Nitrates plant is the first in the world to be built using modularised construction. Using specialist project teams in Norway, Spain, Indonesia and Australia, key segments of the facility were built offshore and shipped to site. At its peak more than 500 workers were required on site to complete the project. The facility will have 70 operational employees and all will live with their families in the nearby community of Karratha. The Pilbara facility utilises the latest technology and design to minimise its environmental footprint, while production close to where the product will be used reduces the need for transportation, resulting in a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.last_img

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