Borealis France

Ottmarsheim
France

Borealis Plant Chooses FOAMGLAS® ONE™ Insulation To Re-insulate Four Storage Spheres.

Borealis AG is a leading provider of innovative solutions in the fields of polyolefins, base chemicals and fertilizers. 

The Borealis facility in Ottmarsheim was seeking an insulation material to re-insulate four storage spheres. These spheres had been insulated with a PUF sprayed system and a CSPE based vapor barrier. Over time, water had penetrated the system and was absorbed by the PUF insulation, which led to a loss in thermal efficiency. Borealis maintenance engineers chose FOAMGLAS® insulation to replace the previous insulation.

The insulation material used on the spheres must withstand local weather conditions. The main requirement was selecting an insulation material that would be impermeable to help prevent ingress of water or water vapor. A second requirement was an insulation material that would keep its thermal properties over a prolonged period of time, helping to provide a maximum insulation efficiency.

The four spheres that were re-insulated consisted of two spheres storing CO2 (carbon dioxide) at -31 °C (-23.8 °F) and two spheres storing NH3 (ammonia) at +10 °C (50 °F).

The diameter of the CO2 sphere was 12,874 mm (42 foot) while the NH3 sphere had a diameter of 17,210 mm (56 foot).

The FOAMGLAS® insulation technical services team conducted appropriate calculations to determine the correct insulation system for each individual sphere.

A double layer system of FOAMGLAS® ONE™ insulation was specified for the CO2 sphere. The total thickness was 120 mm (4.72”) and the insulation was fully bonded with a double component adhesive. The joints were sealed with a non-hardening sealant. Everything was finished off with an external coating that consisted of a CSPE-based mastic reinforced with fiberglass.

Because of the storage temperature of ammonia, a single layer system would suffice for the insulation of the NH3 sphere. A single layer FOAMGLAS® ONE™ system of 70 mm (2.75”) thickness was specified. The pre-fabricated curved segments had been factory pre-assembled in two pieces to minimize the amount of joints and help increase on-site efficiency.

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