Types of polyethylene Shell Polymers manufactures

The plant will produce two categories of polyethylene, used to make products ranging from common every-day household goods to environmental liners for retention ponds that help to protect and preserve the environment. The types of polyethylene the plant would produce include:

Linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) which is the primary raw material for items like flexible food packaging and pouches, collation shrink wrap, stretch film, protective packaging, flexible tubing, sports equipment (canoes), industrial equipment (tornado shelters), wire and cable insulation, agricultural films; and

High-density polyethylene (HDPE) that is used to create “stiffer” products such as toys, crates, drums, shampoo bottles, milk jugs, detergent/bleach bottles, pails (buckets), environmental liners, paint containers, garden furniture and other types of housewares.

Within these two main categories of PE, there are many different slates Shell’s facility will be produced, to specific technical requirements for the differing slates.

The facility will first “crack,” or break apart, ethane’s large molecules, re-arranging the carbon and hydrogen atoms to create ethylene. This is accomplished by heating the ethane to very high temperatures, greater than 1500°F (800°C), in one of the cracker’s seven furnaces. Natural gas and “tail gas” (a hydrogen and natural gas combination from the furnace that is recycled) fuel the process.

The ethylene stream will be sent to one of three units and further processed to create different types of polyethylene pellets. Those pellets then will be shipped to manufacturers to make many of the plastic products we use every day. Most of the products will be shipped via rail; some proximate customers will receive Shell product delivery via truck. The site will have both rail and truck loading capabilities: