Win-win as deliveries of gaseous nitrogen starts @the Equinor Kårstø processing plant

The Equinor Kårstø processing plant in Norway (operated by Gassco with Equinor as Technical Service Provider) is the largest of its kind in Europe. It plays a key role in the transport and processing of gas and condensate light-oil from major sites on the Norwegian continental shelf. It is a win-win as on-site deliveries of gaseous nitrogen starts @the Equinor Kårstø processing plant.

Approximately 30 fields are connected to Kårstø via pipelines. Around 90 million standard cubic meters of rich gas can flow through the plant every day.

From truck to on-site delivery

Until recently, Linde supplied liquid nitrogen to Equinor by truck. However, last year, a ten-year on-site contract was signed for deliveries of gaseous nitrogen from the Air Separation Unit (ASU) at Susort, Norway to the neighboring Equinor Kårstø processing plant.

On-site delivery is now up and running. The new pipeline brings vast safety improvement as it reduces the need for heavy transports in the site. Also, reducing truck deliveries to the plant are beneficial from an environmental perspective. Hence, a win-win for both Equinor and Linde from safety, environmental and also from financial perspective.

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Increased safety and efficiency

Karl Børge Ask, leader operational support

”With the pipeline, there is no need for manual loading and unloading by truck. This brings both vast safety advantages to our employees and also increases our efficiency, says Karl Børge Ask, leader operational support.  In addition, with reducing the number of trucks on site, we also reduce the amount of ignition sources, which is essential on a gas plant.

At Kårstø the wet gas is separated from the rich gas and split into the products propane, butane, isobutane, naphta and ethane. Production of liquid propane gas (LPG), ethane and light-oil results in around 700 tanker dockings per year, making the Kårstø plant rank as the world’s third largest producer of LPG.

Now, we are equipped for the future and a possible expansion of the plant”

Flexibility and ensured supply

“The onsite solution brings high flexibility, which is very good. Previously we logged the nitrogen levels to make sure we would always have enough gas for the coming production levels. With the onsite solution, this isn’t necessary. We always have the nitrogen needed and can easily handle a higher load to the production.

Now, we are equipped for the future and a possible expansion of the plant and an increased need for nitrogen gas”, Karl Børge Ask concludes.

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Text: Carina Aspenberg
Photos: Sigmund Johannes Aas

Facts about the Equinor – Kårstø processing plant

The Kårstø processing plant in Nord-Rogaland is the largest of its kind in Europe. The plant plays a key role in the transport and processing of gas and condensate/light oil from major sites on the Norwegian continental shelf.

Around 30 fields are connected to Kårstø via pipelines, and millions of cubic meters of gas and condensate/light oil flow into the plant every day. There, the heavier components are separated out, while the rest, which is called dry gas or sales gas, is piped onwards to the continent.

Around 90 million standards cubic meters of rich gas can flow through the plant every day.

WET GAS

At the processing plant, wet gas (NGL—natural gas liquids) is separated from the rich gas and split into the products propane, normal butane, isobutane, naphtha and ethane.

Production of LPG, ethane and stabilized condensate/light oil results in around 700 tanker dockings per year, meaning that the Kårstø plant ranks as the world’s third largest producer of LPG.

DRY GAS

The dry gas is exported from Kårstø via the Europipe II pipeline to Dornum in North Germany and through the Statpipe and Norpipe pipelines to Emden.