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Saudi Butanol Company (Sabuco) has started trial production of a butanol plant at Jubail, which is the world’s largest – able to produce 330,000 tons/year of n-butanol and 11,000 t/y of iso-butanol at full capacity – as well as the first in the Middle East.
Sabuco is a joint venture of Sadara – itself a joint venture of state petroleum firm Saudi Aramco and US chemicals producer Dow – with Saudi Kayan as well as Sahara’s Saudi Acrylic Acid Company (SAAC) affiliate. Sadara says trial production began on 20 October and is expected to continue for three-to-six months, until the plant’s capacity for commercial production is confirmed. Butanol is mainly used in producing other chemicals, including acrylates, esters, glycol ethers and acetates, and as a plasticizer and solvent.
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