Fluor-TechnipFMC JV completes construction on Sasol project in US


Fluor Technip Integrated (FTI), a joint venture between engineering and construction firm Fluor and TechnipFMC, has completed the EPCM services scope of work on Sasol’s petrochemical complex in Westlake, Louisiana, US.

In October 2014, Sasol announced the final approval of an $8.1bn ethane cracker and derivatives complex at its existing site in Lake Charles, Louisiana.

However, the overall project cost has been revised to around $11.8bn due to late additions to scope of work for the cracker; loss of cumulative month of work as a result of excessive rainfall in 2018; productivity losses; and delays in schedule of the remaining units.

The joint venture will assist the Sasol team in the remaining activities by working with the company on transition plans for each unit and system. The team will also assist in performance testing for the complex.

A 1.5mtpa ethane cracker is at the heart of the complex, which also includes six downstream chemical units and associated utilities, infrastructure and offsites.

Fluor president of energy and chemicals business in the Americas 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 US 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.”

The joint venture commenced incremental transitions of assets to Sasol in November 2018 upon completion of each unit or system.

Barring the low-density polyethylene unit, all other units have been transitioned to Sasol. The low-density polyethylene unit will be handed over by the end of March 2019.

The project achieved first steam in August 2018 and utilities supporting the early process units were fully operational by the end of November 2018. The linear low-density polyethylene unit achieved beneficial operations in February 2019.

Over 6,000 staff and craft were on site during the peak of construction of the complex, which uses the ethylene produced by the cracker to manufacture high-value chemicals that are used in consumer products.

As part of the work, the team has strengthened and widened more than two miles of roadway in the community to support the completion of over 500 heavy haul transports to the project site.

The Fluor joint venture has integrated a team of 30 main construction contractors and collaborated with Sasol to strengthen the local economy, with more than $4bn committed to Louisiana businesses.

Fluor’s equipment division AMECO has provided construction equipment to sub-contractors onsite.


Image: The Sasol petrochemical complex in Westlake, Louisiana. Photo: Courtesy of Fluor Corporation / Business Wire.

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