Four storage tanks for liquefied helium at the third commerical helium production line of the fifth process train installed at the Amur Gas Processing Plant

November 2, 2021 15:35

Four storage tanks for liquefied helium at the third commerical helium production line of the fifth process train installed at the Amur Gas Processing Plant. Each take has a volume of about 120 cubic meters and is able to hold about 13,000 kg of commercial product. A spiral-wound heat exchanger has recently been installed at the same unit: it is a key equipment item in the process of production of this valuable gas.


Amur Gas Processing Plant project provides for operation of three helium treatment, liquefaction and loading units with a capacity of 20 million cubic meters of helium per year each. First helium unit was put into operation in September 2021.
Multicomponent natural gas is supplied to the Amur Gas Processing Plant via Power of Siberia main gas pipeline. Valuable components are extracted at the plant: methane, ethane, propane, butane, pentane and hexane fraction, and helium. Liquefaction of helium extracted from the nitrogen and helium mix subjected to low-temperature adsorption takes place by Joule-Thompson valve throttling at a temperature of minus 269°C that is close to the temperature of outer space.
Liquefied helium is transported to the helium hub in Primorye region in isothermal cryocontainer trucks.

Background:

The Amur GPP is to be one of the world's largest natural gas processing plants with its annual capacity of 42 bln of cubic meters of gas. Under full load, the Amur GPP is to provide annually around 2.4 mln tons of ethane, 1.5 mln tons of LPG, 200 tons of pentane-hexane fraction and 60 mln cubic meters of helium, which is highly demanded by high-tech industries. The main consumer of ethane and LPG from the Amur GPP is going to be Amur Gas Chemical Complex (joint SIBUR and China's Sinopec project).

To date, the first two lines of the plant have been put into operation, as well as the first helium purification, liquefaction and packaging plant.

Gazprom Pererabotka Blagoveshchensk LLC (member of Gazprom Group) is the investor, the owner and the operator of Amur GPP. Construction is managed by JSC NIPIGAS.