Methanol Plant Design

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Final Report: Phase II

University of California, Davis

Date of Report: June 07, 2006

Design Group One Elton Amirkhas Raj Bedi Steve Harley Trevor Lango


Executive Summary
This report is the first phase of a final report designed to investigate the feasibility of methanol production in Trinidad and Tobago. Specifically, this report outlines a proposed four-stage process for producing methanol:     STAGE 1: Syngas production STAGE 2: Upstream processing STAGE 3: Methanol production STAGE 4: Downstream processing

The proposed design produces 5,116 MTPD of 99.85 wt% methanol. As designed, the total bare module cost of the plant is $372 million. The inside battery limit and outside battery limit costs are $349 million and $23 million respectively. Total capital investment includes the direct permanent investment of $512 million and is $779 million. The calculated BTROI is 42% with annual net earnings of roughly $203 million per year. The NPV is $1.2 billion in the last year of production and suggests a profitable venture. The project managers expressed to us their concern over the current price of oxygen. Given that our plant consumes 1.78 trillion lbs per year, which costs a total of $41.5 million, they instructed us to lead an investigation into possible onsite production possibilities. In the course of our investigation we found that VPSA, PSA, and membrane separations were strongly lacking in both purity requirements and desirable flow rates. This then lead us to the conclusion that the Claude process, a highly energy-optimized cryogenic separations technique, would suit our needs. Not only will this process supply the required purity of 99.5% mole basis, but it is robust enough to supply the large flow rates needed. The estimated total capital investment is $72.2 million. Due to the difficulty encountered in costing cryogenic process units it is recommended that a more detailed capital cost...
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