Renewable diesel plant in La. nearly complete

By Ron Kotrba | April 26, 2010
Posted May 19, 2010

Construction of the 75-MMgy Dynamic Fuels renewable diesel plant in Geismar, La., not far from Baton Rouge, is nearing completion, according to Jeff Bigger, Syntroleum Corp.'s senior vice president and director of the Dynamic Fuels management committee. Dynamic Fuels LLC is a 50/50 joint venture between Tyson Foods Inc. and Syntroleum.

The facility will use Syntroleum's trademarked Bio-Synfining process to convert low-cost feedstocks to renewable diesel fuel, with coproduction of naphtha and liquid petroleum gas (LPG). Tyson Foods' experience in applied protein-chemistry will come into play for pre-processing and optimizing the feedstock mix, which will consist of the food giant's large byproduct stream of beef tallow, pork lard, chicken fat and various greases, for best possible conversion to fuel.

Mechanical completion of the renewable diesel refinery will come in June, just weeks away. "Construction is very near complete, with primary efforts at this point being completion of quality inspections on the piping, and items such as post-weld heat-treating, weld X-ray, hardness testing and final restoration after pressure testing," he said.

Commissioning, plant start-up and full-rate operations are expected in the third quarter. "Nine of the 27 systems in the plant have been turned over from the contractor to Dynamic Fuels and are being commissioned," Bigger told Biodiesel Magazine.

Dynamic Fuels will be able to produce a variety of diesel products from summer- to arctic-grade on-road renewable diesel fuel to biofuel for aviation applications that meet all U.S. military requirements. The plant cost more than $150 million and more than 300 jobs are being created.

"We are fully staffed with our permanent plant staff and they have completed preparation of all operating procedures and have completed all training, so the staff is ready to operate as soon as the plant is completed," Bigger said.
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