August 11, 2020 • 2 min read

Advancing to the next phase of Avantium's bioplastics project

We’re progressing to the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) phase of the development of Avantium’s flagship facility in Delfzijl, the Netherlands.

This follows on from the work we completed on the concept development and front-end engineering design of the facility.

The facility will produce plant-based furandicarboxylic acid (FDCA), a key building block for many chemicals and plastics, such as polyethylene furanoate (PEF). PEF is a fully recyclable and degradable plastic with improved barrier performance and thermal properties. It has the potential to make a significant sustainable impact on the packaging, textiles, and film industries.

This will be the world’s first facility to produce FDCA on a commercial scale, with a capacity of five kilo tonnes per year. And will be the commercial proof for future larger-scale developments.

Partnering with Avantium to deliver a first-of-a-kind facility

In January 2021, we announced a strategic partnership with Avantium, acquiring a shareholding in Avantium in return for a €10 million equity investment with a risk-sharing mechanism over the EPC phase of the FDCA plant.

Following the recent positive final investment decision, we signed a technology cooperation agreement with Avantium and will now deliver EPC services to develop the facility.

These services will be executed by our offices in the Netherlands and Belgium, with support from our Global Integrated Delivery (GID) team in India.

Celebrating the first piling ceremony

The first piling works took place on 20 April 2022 representing the beginning of the construction of the plant. Construction is planned to be completed by the end of 2023, enabling the commercial launch of PEF from 2024 onwards.

Four men wearing suits and hard hat digging the dirt with shovels.
L-R: Bas Blom, Tom van Aken, Cas de Koning, Mark Brantley

“Avantium is proud to be the world’s first company that – together with Worley – is constructing a commercial facility for the production of FDCA, the key building block of PEF. And we are very pleased that Worley has become a minority shareholder in our subsidiary Avantium Renewable Polymers. Avantium believes that the confidence in the project demonstrated by Worley and their substantial experience in scaling-up to industrial plants adds strength and credibility to Avantium’s technology and licensing proposition,” said Tom van Aken, Avantium CEO.

“We’ve worked with Avantium over the last years in the scale-up to commercial scale for its flagship facility and this marks an important milestone in the project as we evolve to the next phase. We value our partnerships with our customers as we help deliver first-of-a-kind facilities that will produce the materials and products for a more sustainable world,” said Mark Brantley, Group President EMEA and APAC.

Flagship plant, crane and wind turbine.
FDCA flagship plant

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