Chevron Adds Group II Hub in UK


Chevron Lubricants added a third storage facility for API Group II base oil in Europe, in Eastham, England.

The company currently has Group II storage facilities in Antwerp, Belgium, and Hamburg, Germany. The Eastham facility will carry Group II grades 100R, 220R, 600R and Group II +, 110RLV.

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The terminal is fully operational now, Alan Outhwaite, Chevron Lubricants base oil business development manager, told Lube Report.

Outhwaite said the Eastham location was appealing from a logistics standpoint. Eastham is located in the North West of England, he said. It has good vessel access as well as excellent road connections, as it is close to an extensive motorway network.

Performance specifications are tightening in Europe to the point that Group II quality base oil will advantage many formulations, said Cary Knuth, general manager, base oils, Chevron Lubricants. This new supply hub highlights Chevrons commitment to providing reliable supply to European lubricant producers as they transition to new formulations.

The latest specifications call for formulations that have low to medium amounts of sulphated ash, phosphorus and sulphur (SAPS). Meeting those specifications has led to a base oil supply gap for producers of 10W-XX and 15W-XX multigrade lubricants, which account for more than 85 percent of the heavy-duty motor oil market in Europe, Chevron said in a news release. Group III alone has insufficient viscometrics to meet the performance requirements for heavier motor oil grades, and Group I has too much sulphur for the new specifications. Heavy duty engines require lubricants that provide sufficient high temperature/high shear characteristics to ensure adequate wear protection and maximize engine durability. Blending with Group II base oil delivers adequate engine protection while meeting medium and low SAPS specifications, the company said.

Chevrons new 25,000 barrels per day base oil plant nearing completion in Pascagoula, Miss., will supply the companys network of hubs in Europe. The company claims that it will be the only Group II base oil producer with multiple plants producing interchangeable base oils.

The Chevron base oils inventoried at Eastham are part of the same Chevron global product slate, Outhwaite explained. Once testing is complete, material from the scheduled Pascagoula facility will also be incorporated into the Chevron global product slate.

The companys Richmond, Calif., plant has 20,700 b/d Group II capacity. GS Caltex, a 50-50 joint venture of Chevron and GS Holdings, has a base oil plant in Yeosu, South Korea, with 23,000 Group II and 3,000 b/d Group III capacity.

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