Geismar Alpha Olefins Expansion Project

At its Geismar Chemical Plant in South Louisiana, Shell is taking advantage of the latest technologies and state-of-the-art equipment to execute an expansion project that, when completed, will make the Shell Geismar site the largest alpha olefins producer in the world. Alpha olefins are used to produce household detergents, plastics, synthetic lubricants, and drilling fluids, among other useful products.

The Tiger AO4 Project will add an additional 425,000 tons of capacity to the Geismar facility, which is already the largest alpha olefins producer in North America. The AO4 project utilizes local relationships and resources, with emphasis on working with local contractors. Notably, the primary construction contractor (and largest contractor on the project in terms of workforce size) is Turner Industries, which was founded and is headquartered in nearby Baton Rouge, LA.

Key Facts

Location: Shell Geismar
Interests: 100% Shell
Key Contractors: Jacobs Engineering, Turner Industries
Production: Once AO-4 is complete, Shell Geismar will be the largest producer of alpha olefins in the world.

Our Mission

With safety and quality at the forefront, the Tiger AO4 project is committed to set the standard for our industry.

Project Highlights

  • The project provides 1,500 construction jobs and 20 permanent jobs.
  • The new facility is contained within Shell Geismar’s existing 800 acres.
  • Alpha olefins are used to make high-performance synthetic lubricants, biodegradable detergents, and drilling fluids, and as co-monomers to make stronger, lighter polyethylene film.
  • Alpha Olefins Fact Sheet (see below)

Project Developments

  • Local officials and Shell leadership broke ground for Geismar’s alpha olefin expansion project in February 2016.
  • Alpha Olefins Expansion Announced for Geismar, Louisiana

Chemical Week - Shell to complete Geismar alphaolefins unit in late 2018

Shell reports “good progress” on construction of a 450,000metrictons/year linear alphaolefins (LAO) unit at Geismar, Louisiana, beside the Mississippi River.  “We are on track to begin commercial production by the end of 2018,” says Graham van’t Hoff, executive vice president of Royal Dutch Shell’s global chemicals business. The company says it has also made a final investment decision to expand midcut and lightcut alcohol capacity at the site.

Shell began construction of the new LAO unit in January 2016. The company has finished building a cooling tower for the unit and two new storage areas, one for rail and one for the unit’s high purity butene. Ethylene will be supplied by Shell’s nearby Norco and Deer Park sites. Shell already has three LAO units at Geismar, where the company has been producing alphaolefins since the 1970s.

When the new unit begins production, Geismar will become the largest alphaolefins producer in the world, with a total LAO capacity of over 1.3 million metric tons/year, says Shell. The company also produces ethylene oxide, alcohol ethoxylates, ethylene glycols, and higher alcohols at Geismar.

ICIS - Shell’s US Geismar alpha olefins project on track for 2018 completion

Shell’s alpha olefins project in Geismar, in the southern US state of Louisiana, is on track to start commercial operations by the end of 2018, the Anglo-Dutch energy major said on Monday.

Capital expenditure for the plant’s expansion will total $717m, according to the company at the time of the announcement in early 2016. The 425,000 tonne/year facility represents Shell’s largest investment in the US, according to the company’s vice-president for chemicals Graham van’t Hoff. “We are on track to begin commercial production by the end of 2018, enabling Shell to remain an important economic engine for this region,” he said. After the expansion, Shell said its alpha olefins production capacity out of Geismar will stand at 1.3m tonnes/year, and employ 700 workers.

ICIS - Shell to expand US fatty alcohols at Geismar plant in Louisiana

Shell Chemical on Monday announced a final investment decision (FID) to expand mid-cut and low-cut fatty alcohol capacity at its Geismar plant in Louisiana. The company did not specify the size of the expansion, but said it plans to start commercial production of incremental alcohols on the same timing as the new fourth linear alpha olefins unit.

Shell said on Monday that the alpha olefins project is on track to start commercial operations by the end of 2018. “Increasing Geismar’s alcohol capacity helps Shell to adapt to changing market conditions by internally consuming both mid-cut linear alpha olefin and internal olefin feedstocks,” the company said.

Contact Us

Are you new to Shell or interested in doing business with Shell?

Call 800-237-8645

Shell Geismar External Relations
Kevin Hardy

Alpha Olefins Fact Sheet

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