ExMo Completes Baytown Expansion


ExxonMobil last week announced completion of its Baytown, Texas, refinery expansion, which will increase production of its API Group II and II+ base stocks. The company is also introducing a new 6.5 centiStoke Group II base stock for blending heavy-duty engine oils.

The investment was originally announced in early 2013. The company did not disclose the specific amount of increased capacity. LubesnGreasesmagazine estimated that the Baytown expansion has added at least 7,000 barrels per day Group II capacity, bringing that plants total capacity to at least 28,500 b/d. That would also give the company a combined 54,500 b/d of capacity at three wholly-owned North American base oil plants. In addition, Imperial Oil – which is 69.6 percent owned by ExxonMobil – has a 2,400 b/d Group I plant in Strathcona, Canada.

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According to the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers 2014 Lubricating Oil and Wax Capacities Report, ExxonMobils Baytown base oil plant before the expansion had 9,800 b/d of Group I and 11,700 b/d Group II capacity. Its other base oil plants in North America are in Baton Rouge, La., (16,000 b/d Group I) and Beaumont, Texas (10,000 b/d Group I).

In addition to increasing our supply of our Group II+ EHC 45 [a 4.5 cSt oil], we are introducing Group II EHC 65 and are now able to provide our customers with even broader blend coverage while helping to improve supply chain efficiency, George W. Arndt Jr., general manager of global basestocks and specialties for ExxonMobil Fuels & Lubricants, said in a news release. According to product data on the companys website, EHC 65 has a kinematic viscosity of 6.3-6.6 cSt at 100 degrees C.

The company said its EHC 45 product is designed for blending 5W and heavier passenger car motor oils, while EHC 65 is ideal for heavy-duty engine oils and optimizes 15W-40 blending by minimizing the need for additional higher-viscosity components while maintaining low volatility. Together, they enable important emerging grades such as heavy-duty 10W-30, ExxonMobil said.

We have enhanced the formulation of our Group II/II+ base stocks to significantly improve their low temperature performance at a given viscosity, stated David Parsons, Americas base stocks sales manager for ExxonMobil. In addition, the expansion of our Group II+ EHC 45 base stock capacity will allow blenders to produce 5W passenger car motor oils without having to use more expensive Group III base stocks.