Sitech Services contributes to making Chemelot more sustainable with infrastructure project

Chemelot aims to be the first circular chemical site in Europe by 2050, utilizing sustainable, non-fossil resources and energy to produce plastics for everyday household items. In an ambitious project at Chemelot, Sitech Services plays a crucial role as the coordinating party in implementing the necessary infrastructure changes at Chemelot and the port of Stein, thereby making a significant contribution to Chemelot’s sustainability goals.

Sustainability at Chemelot requires infrastructure adaptations
A robust infrastructure is essential for Chemelot, where efforts are made to make the transportation of current raw materials cleaner, quieter, and safer, as well as to support the transition to renewable resources such as recycled waste and biomass. Ralph Schulz, project manager at Sitech Services, explains: “The factories at Chemelot are interconnected and produce raw materials for other facilities on the site. Additionally, external supply sources are used. The port in Stein plays a vital role in raw material supply via water. The project involves loading raw materials with a new collision protection system using loading arms at the port of Stein and a new transport pipeline from the port to Chemelot. On the site, the raw material is stored in two steel tanks, buried in a mound.”

Ralph Schulz: “Various studies were conducted for this solution, and transporting through a pipeline from the port of Stein and storage in tanks on-site was found to be the best solution.” The port of Stein will continue to play an essential role in future raw material flows. Chemelot aims to make transportation and the environment cleaner, quieter, and safer. If we continue to rely on truck transport, freight traffic would double by 2030.

A large project in a short timeframe
The project must be completed by the end of 2023, and an alliance of parties is working on its execution, with Sitech overseeing this project team. Ralph Schulz: “The project is ambitious, and the schedule is tight, but we are in control, and everything is progressing smoothly. We had to scale up several times to meet deadlines. Fortunately, Sitech is well-equipped for this, with the expertise and personnel to effectively manage various project components. It’s certainly a challenging task, but I’m proud that we are contributing as a partner to Chemelot’s ambitions.”

Strong collaboration based on knowledge and transparency
The parties collaborating on this project signed an alliance agreement in December 2022 and were deliberately selected to collectively achieve the challenging project objectives. Ralph Schulz: “They are familiar with the locations, and we have worked with them before. In the agreement, we have stipulated that we work according to an ‘open-book’ system in which we are transparent and keep each other sharp. By consistently assigning activities to the partner with the most knowledge and expertise, we ensure that the project stays on schedule. With the ambitious goal of being ‘up-and-running’ by the end of the year, we are constantly coordinating. This way, we identify risks and scenarios that could disrupt the schedule and how to resolve them as quickly as possible. So far, the project is running smoothly; the alliance partners have good communication and seamlessly take on tasks. We easily say to each other, ‘You do this, and I’ll do that,’ without debate, preventing delays.”

Milestone in July: extraordinary transport of two mega-tanks
On the nights of July 7th and 8th, two mega-tanks (known as bullets) embarked on an extraordinary journey from Genk, through the port of Stein, to Chemelot. To allow these 53-meter-long and 8-meter-wide bullets to cross the highway, the A2 was temporarily closed. Thanks to the efforts of all involved parties and the cooperation of surrounding municipalities, the journey proceeded smoothly and safely. The bullets are now buried in a mound on the Chemelot site and will be used for the storage of propylene, which is used in the production of raw materials for items such as wind turbine blades, TVs, and LEGO.

Project/Alliance Management: Sitech Services

Alliance Partners: Van den Biggelaar Grond- en Waterbouw, Stevacon Bouw, BLM Wegenbouw, EQUANS, Fluor Corporation, and MVOI B.V.

More information?
If you would like to learn more about this project, please contact ralph.schulz@sitech.nl For general information, you can reach out via frontoffice@sitech.nl.

Related articles

Article, News

Sitech contributes to sustainability with infrastructure project

News

Sitech and Sorama working together on asset health monitoring and inspections in Ex-zones

News

Recap: Second edition Sitech Smart Summit successful