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ABB to support Canadian refiner in transformation of crude oil facility

Published by , Editorial Assistant
Hydrocarbon Engineering,

ABB has been selected by Braya Renewable Fuels to support the transformation of the idled Come By Chance oil refinery in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, into a renewable fuels production centre. Braya Renewable Fuels is focused on powering the decarbonised future of the heavy transportation sector, a critical component of the global economy, and is seeking to complete the phase one conversion project and begin producing renewable diesel in late 2022, with initial nameplate production capacity of up to 18 000 bbl/d.

Following majority acquisition by Cresta Fund Management, a US-based private equity firm, the Come By Chance site became the first asset of Braya Renewable Fuels, and is currently being transformed to utilise renewable feedstock. The Braya facility will convert used cooking oil, corn oil and animal fat into renewable diesel and sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). With the transformation, the strategically-located refinery will continue its 50 year operating history, securing employment for 200+ workers.

The conversion to renewable diesel production requires a significant upgrade to the facility’s existing automation technology, which dates to the 1980s. To ensure optimum efficiency and productivity in the manufacturing operations, ABB will deploy its ABB AbilityTM 800xA distributed control system. The facility will leverage ABB’s signature Adaptive ExecutionTM project approach to streamline and optimise operations into a more agile end-to-end solution, tied together with the ABB Ability digital platform. This will eliminate a large part of the installation costs and allow for late design flexibility, which is particularly important on this fast-paced project.

Braya has also commissioned three of ABB’s advanced Extended Operator Workplace (EOW) platforms for its new control room, enabling 360° visibility of plant processes and improved communications solutions for operators. ABB’s scope of work also includes installation and commissioning of the new equipment, user training and delivery of its digital ABB Ability Connected Worker application suite to improve safety, reduce unscheduled downtime and increase operational efficiency. The project will deliver a High-Fidelity Process Simulator for the HI and HDO Units, with a fourth EOW platform to enable dedicated Operator Training. The Process Simulator is an enabler for efficient plant commissioning and start-up.

Renewable fuel, a growing alternative to traditional fuel, is produced from 100% low-carbon renewable source materials. It is wholly compatible with existing vehicles and infrastructure and can yield up to 80% lower life cycle emissions over fossil-based diesels.

The global renewable diesel capacity is expected to reach 14.63 million t in 2024, with the global demand projected to reach 12.88 million t. Factors such as the growing production of motor vehicles, increase in biofuel demand, rise in carbon dioxide (CO2) emission, availability of used cooking oils and emission control regulations by government will continue to drive the growth of the market.

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