Global engineering and consultancy firm Worley has been awarded a FEED - front-end engineering design – contract to develop Avantium Renewable Polymers’ first plant for the production of 100% plant-based FDCA .
The new plant will be located at Delfzijl, in the north of the Netherlands. Here, Avantium Renewable Polymers, a subsidiary of renewable chemistry company Avantium, will be scaling up its proprietary technology to produce FDCA, a key building block for many chemicals and plastics, from plant sugars.
Mainly, however, the company is targeting the production of PEF, a fully recyclable, bio-based biopolyester with improved barrier performance and thermal properties. PEF has the potential to make a significant impact on the packaging, textiles, and film industries. Avantium Renewable Polymers has completed lab research to demonstrate its new YXY plant-to-plastics technology in a pilot plant.
Worley is carrying out the FEED for the new plant that will make FDCA and PEF commercially available. They also completed the concept development phase in March and concluded that Avantium is ready to progress to commercial scale.
Part of the funding for the new plant is being provided within the scope of the PEFerence project, a five-year EU flagship project to establish a supply chain for FDCA and PEF. It has received funding from the Bio Based Industries Joint Undertaking under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under a grant agreement.
Worley aims to complete the FEED phase at the end of this year, enabling Avantium to take a final investment decision for construction of the flagship plant at the end of 2020. The plant is scheduled to start up in 2023.