Saudi Arabia’s Gasan Investment & Industrial Development Company (Gasan) is planning to build a 500,000 tonne-a-year (t/y) calcined petroleum coke (CPC) plant at Jubail in the kingdom.

The facility plans to supply CPC, a vital ingredient used in the production of aluminium, to local smelters in the Middle East and the project aims to start production by the end of 2012.

“This project will be the first factory that produces CPC in an integrated manner, utilising the latest technology and will make us able to compete locally and globally,” says Gasan chairman Sheikh Abdul al-Jumaih.

The project has been allocated 250,000 square metres of land in Jubail and has been given all the necessary building permits by Saudi Aramco. Contracts for technical and equipment supplies have also been signed with as yet unnamed technology suppliers. Australia’s WorleyParsons will provide engineering and project management services.

 The raw material for the plant will be green petroleum coke, which will be sourced from abroad until a suitable local source can be found.

Waste heat from the plant might also be used to power a desalination/power unit with an output of around 4.3 million cubic meters a year of desalinated water and 24 megawatts of electricity.

Current demand for CPC in the Middle East is around 1.1 million-t/y.