Sonangol is building a refinery in Angola to reduce the African country's dependence on imported petroleum products. The national oil company has long sought to build and operate a grassroots refinery in Angola. In addition, the 200,000-barrel-per-day (b/d) SonaRef refinery will allow Sonangol to take advantage of domestically produced acidic heavy crude oil.
SonaRef, which will be built on a 150-hectare site north of Lobito in Angola's coastal Benguela province, will process crude into the following products: unleaded gasoline, diesel, jet fuel (Jet1), illuminant oil, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), and limited quantities of sulfur and oil coke. According to Sonangol, the specifications of these products from the high-conversion refinery will match those of export target markets including Europe and the United States.
Sonangol has awarded KBR a contract to provide front-end engineering and design (FEED) work for the Lobito refinery. In its Nov. 4, 2008, announcement of the award, KBR stated that work would begin immediately. The refinery is expected to begin operations in 2012.
In mid-August 2009, KBR announced that it had been awarded a contract to provide license and engineering services for its Orthoflow fluid catalytic cracker (FCC) technology and a Moderate Pressure Hydrocracking Unit (MPHC). In addition, KBR will deliver Diesel Hydrotreating (DHT) and Kerosene Hydrotreating technologies.