The Challenge of Top-to-Bottom Collaboration
The SATORP (Saudi Aramco Total Refining and Petrochemical Company) complex came on stream on July 2014, eight years after the first agreements were signed and just five years after construction began. The facility refines crude oil that is especially hard to process into high-value-added products.
To coordinate the project, the two partners pooled their expertise and worked together at every level. It took seven international engineering contractors and a number of Saudi companies to get the job done.
A Colossal Project
370 million hours of work by almost 45,000 people.
Up to 400,000 barrels of crude oil refined every day.
Annual production of 700,000 tons of paraxylene, 150,000 tons of benzene and 200,000 tons of high-purity propylene.
A Comprehensive Array of Technology for Processing Heavy Oil
Our refinery is equipped with deep conversion units to process crudes with a high sulfur content and a large proportion of heavy residue. It meets market requirements safely, with:
A mild hydrocracker (MHC) and a distillate hydrocracker (DHC). A furnace, reactor and distillation column all rolled into one, the distillate hydrocracker converts the heavy petroleum fractions into light, ultra-low sulfur products.
A fluid catalytic cracking unit (FCC) that makes it possible to obtain a wide variety of products, including very light hydrocarbons like propylene and LPG.
A coking unit that uses a thermal process to convert heavy fractions into light petroleum products and coke.
An Emphasis on Training
The SATORP complex will eventually employ 1,100 people, of which 85% Saudis. To make good on this commitment, we launched an ambitious training program, with SATORP signing a partnership agreement with a major French public research, innovation and training center called Institut Français du Pétrole Énergies Nouvelles (IFPEN). While 28 young Saudi engineers completed their program of study in France between 2010 and 2012, nearly 400 Saudi operators were trained on site. The young apprentices also completed a number of internships at Saudi Aramco and Total sites.