German rerefiner Avista Oil AG and United Kingdom-based used oil collector Slicker Recycling Ltd. entered into a partnership to build a used oil rerefinery in Kalundborg, Denmark. Construction of the rerefinery, which will produce API Group I base oil, is expected to be finalized by the end of 2019.
Slicker, a subsidiary of Greenbottle Ltd., recently acquired Avista Oil Services UK Ltd. Slicker claims to be the largest used oil collector in the U.K. The used oil collection networks of Avista Oil and Greenbottles subsidiaries will supply feedstock from different European markets, the companies said in their announcement.
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The site in Kalundborg has an existing Avista Oil rerefinery with capacity to make 42,000 metric tons per year of API Group I oils. The plant ceased production in July 2017 following a fire.
After the fire in Kalundborg, we always believed that we would rebuild the facility, Avista Oil AG CEO Marc Verfurth stated in a news release. We offer a sustainable business model, and this joint venture partnership with Greenbottle will enable Avista Oil to expand their rerefining capacity, increase the geographic footprint, with all parties benefitting greatly from this cooperation. We are very much looking forward to the end of next year, when Kalundborg will again be producing high quality base oil.
The facility that suffered the fire was hit very strong, although some parts were saved, Lena Neumann, press relations officer for Avista Oil, told Lube Report. This JV is going to construct a new rerefinery on the same ground where the old facility was, so there will be one new facility instead of two separate ones.
Avista said the base oil will be marketed as Group I+ base oil. Group I+ in Avista terms means that the parameters for [viscosity index] and saturates are close to or even within the definition of Group II, Neumann said.
The base oil production capacity of the plant wont be set until engineering is completed, but Neumann noted that the yield for Avistas technology is typically around 60 to 70 percent base oil per ton of used oil feedstock. The feedstock capacity of the plant will be 100,000 t/y.
David Dinwoodie, managing director of Greenbottle, said in a news release that the project will bring together two like-minded companies to re-develop a base oil rerefinery at economic scale in a relatively short time frame. Greenbottle will continue to grow its businesses in the United Kingdom whilst looking at ways to deepen its partnership with Avista Oil AG.
Stephen B. Ames of SBA Consulting, Pepper Pike, Ohio, said the process used at Kalundborg is likely the same used by Avista at its U.S. rerefinery in Peachtree City, Georgia. The quality of the base oils produced is largely a function of the quality of the used motor oil feed, he noted. Good passenger car motor oil and heavy-duty engine oil of the type largely sold in Northern Europe should not pose a problem in producing a high quality Group I.
However, the difference between Group I and Group II is both saturate levels – 90 percent being the cut-off – and sulfur content – 300 parts per million also the cut-off. Their solvent extraction method should be capable of exceeding 90 percent saturates, again using a good [used motor oil] feed. However, their getting to less than 300 ppm sulfur without hydrotreating is highly doubtful.
According to its web site, the existing Kalundborg rerefinery opened in 1992 after being built by Mustad International Group. The site has been collecting used oil and rerefining since 2006.