South Korea’s petrochemical company is located in the town of Yeosu. The plant started from 350,000 tons of ethylene per year production and expanded to 1,000,000 tons per year now. There are twelve naphtha cracking furnaces in this plant. The naphtha used as the feedstock for this plant is fed to a pyrolysis (steam cracking) furnace, where it is combined with steam and heated to 980 to 1,080° C. Within this temperature range, the feedstock molecules "crack" to produce ethylene as well as methane, hydrogen, ethylene, propylene, butadiene, benzene, toluene, xylene, and other co-products. After the pyrolysis reaction is quenched, the rest of the plant separates the desired products into streams that meet the various product specifications. The process steps include distillation, compression, process gas drying, hydrogenation (of acetylenes), and heat transfer.
All of the processes at this ethylene plant are controlled by a Yokogawa CENTUM CS 3000 production control system that was engineered, installed, and commissioned by Yokogawa Korea. To further enhance operations at this plant, Yokogawa Korea introduced the Exapilot operation efficiency improvement package in 2006.