Lawrence Pumps Inc. has been selected to supply the Canadian engineering company SNC-Lavalin with specialized for the new Fort Hills mining and extraction plant that will be operated by Petro-Canada. Now being constructed 50 miles north of Fort McMurray, Alberta, the Fort Hills plant abuts the vast Athabasca oil sands region under development in northern Canada.
Eighteen engineered fully lined slurry pumps, designed and manufactured by Lawrence Pumps, will process a viscous, highly abrasive and flammable solvent/bitumen slurry into upgradeable crude. The upgradeable crude will then be processed into gasoline and diesel fuel.
Oil sands are often referred to as non-conventional oil or crude bitumen, to differentiate it from free-flowing hydrocarbon mixtures of crude oil produced from oil wells. Bitumen is a heavy tar-like slurry that must be diluted to convert it to a crude for further cleaning and processing.
With over 170 billion barrels of recoverable oil, the oil sands region of Alberta is one of the world's largest petroleum reserves, second only to Saudi Arabia. The Fort Hills bitumen extraction plant will supply a downstream upgrader with sufficient crude to produce 140,000 barrels per day of upgraded crude. Operations are slated to begin in 2011.
"We have a proven track record in providing fluid handling solutions to the global energy markets in some of the most difficult applications and environments imaginable. These pumps will need to operate 24/7 at ambient temperatures approaching -50 degrees F," said Paul Reddick, CEO of Lawrence Pumps. He pointed out, "Handling heavy oils safely and reliably is critical for both the business operations of our customers and for the environment."
SNC-Lavalin provides engineering and project management services to a variety of industries, including the petroleum and environmental sectors. It maintains exceptionally high standards for quality, health, safety, and environmental protection.
Lawrence Pumps is a world leader in the design and manufacture of specialty engineered industrial pumps for global energy and petrochemical markets. For over 70 years, Lawrence Pumps has excelled at the design and manufacture of reliable pumps that provide tailored solutions for difficult applications. Lawrence Pumps is privately held company with its headquarters in Lawrence, Mass., and a regional headquarters in Singapore.