NOVA Chemicals Corporation has announced the mechanical completion of its PE1 Expansion project – a third gas phase reactor at the company’s Joffre, Alberta site. The reactor is designed to produce approximately 1 billion pounds of linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) annually, a 40 percent production increase in the Joffre site nameplate polyethylene capacity to approximately 3.5 billion pounds.
The new volume will be NOVAPOL butene LLDPE resin to help meet the growing demand for flexible film products such as food packaging, heavy duty sack and collation shrink. NOVA Chemicals’ butene LLDPE products are already known in the industry for a range of benefits, including excellent balance of physical properties, product uniformity and consistency and best-in-class gel performance.
“Our expansion of the Joffre site with the addition of a third gas phase LLDPE reactor is a key component of our growth strategy to support growing polyethylene demand,” says senior VP, Polyethylene Business Chris Bezaire. “As we collaborate with our customers, we are excited to bring updated technology to drive better resins, structures and applications.”
A phase of equipment testing will be followed by startup and production of LLDPE, expected in the fourth quarter of 2016. Commercial sales are expected to begin in late 2016 or early 2017. This will be the first new LLDPE reactor to start up in the Americas in a decade.