The Motiva joint venture of Shell and Saudi Aramco in the US faces further downtime at its Port Arthur refinery following a fire in a hydrocracker on 17 August. Initial reports said the 600,000 b/d refinery was running at less than half capacity because a 325,000 b/d crude distillation unit (CDU) installed during a major expansion had been idled.
The closure is the latest in a series of teething problems with the new CDU. Reuters said the fire was the second at the plant in a week, and also reported vibration problems in a pipe supplying crude to the new CDU. (CONTINUED - 278 WORDS)