Birwelco USA

Unit Birwelco Completes Major Furnace Contract for Eastman Chemical


29 October 2014

Unit Birwelco Completes Major Furnace Contract for Eastman Chemical

Eastman Chemical commissioned Unit Birwelco to deliver two contracts at their Newport site, which required both construction and engineering services. The full scope of work involved engineering, procurement, fabrication and construction to deliver two Pyrolysis furnaces and two smaller Reboiler furnaces.

Client’s challenge
Eastman Chemical uses specialised process technology and required the fast track delivery and construction of furnaces for the company’s Newport site in order to increase chemical production rates by more than 50%. The two Pyrolysis furnaces also needed to be designed to withstand extremely high operating temperatures.

The role of Unit Birwelco and scope of work
Unit Birwelco delivered two contracts based on the following specification: engineer, supply, fabricate, assemble and construct two Pyrolysis furnaces; engineer, supply, fabricate, assemble and construct two Reboiler furnaces.

The multi million pound contract included:
• Pre-assembly of the two reboiler furnace modules undertaken in Northern Spain, including grade 316 stainless steel coil fabrication and assembly and fibre and refractory lining of furnace modules.
• Prefabrication of steelwork modules for the Pyrolysis furnaces was also undertaken in Northern Spain, complete with refractory lining installation and partial refractory dryout undertaken prior to site delivery.
• Approximately 100 tonnes of grade 275 and grade 355 structural steel was fabricated using GMAW welding techniques, together with small quantities of grade 304 and grade 310 stainless steel plate for areas of elevated temperature.
• Engineering undertaken by Birwelco Limited, part of the Unit Birwelco Group, at the company’s Halesowen office in the West Midlands.
• Construction work completed at client site in Newport, South Wales.
• High intensity design Pyrolysis furnaces able to operate with firebox temperatures in excess of 960 degrees centigrade, incorporating incoloy coil metallurgy.
• Each of the Pyrolysis furnaces was rated at 4.5MW heat duty.
• The Reboiler furnaces were each rated at nominally 1MW heat duty.
• Reboiler furnaces delivered to site within 34 weeks of order being placed.
• Construction work was completed in October 2014.
• Unit spent 25,000 man-hours on engineering, procurement and project management.
• 30,000 man-hours were expended during the construction phase.

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