Located along the Mississippi River in Roxana, Ill., the Wood River Refinery is a 306,000 b/d multiple-train facility owned on a 50/50 basis by ConocoPhillips and EnCana Corp. The facility, which was owned by Shell for more than 75 years, has been in operation since 1918.
According to ConocoPhillips, the refinery processes both light, low-sulfur and heavy, high-sulfur crude oils. The facility receives domestic as well as foreign crudes via various nearby pipelines and enjoys good access to the St. Louis and Chicago markets. Currently, Wood River can handle 30,000 b/d bitumen. In addition, its clean product yield is 77%.
Wood River's capabilities include: alkylation; catalytic cracking; catalytic hydrocracking; catalytic reforming; desulfurization; hydrogen; delayed coking; and vacuum distillation.
The majority of its product mix constitutes gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel. The facility also produces smaller quantities of petrochemical feedstocks and asphalt. Much of the gasoline and diesel is sold to a third party for delivery to the upper Midwest. The remaining products are distributed throughout the Midwest by pipeline, truck, barge, and rail car.
Wood River is undergoing an expansion to increase the facility's heavy oil processing capacity as well as its overall throughput. In fact, the $4 billion Coker and Refinery Expansion (CORE) will add a coker unit and increase Wood River's bitumen handling capacity nearly 700% to 200,000 b/d. Moreover, the facility's clean product yield is expected to reach 87%. The refinery's total capacity will increase by 94,000 b/d to 400,000 b/d. The facility's owners began the expansion in September 2008 following an unexpectedly lengthy process of obtaining the necessary air permits.
In June 2009, a U.S. EPA appeals board decided that the Illinois EPA did not adequately address questions raised in the approval process for the air permit that it awarded ConocoPhillips in 2007. The board instructed the state agency to go back and analyze data regarding pollution from the refinery's flares. The state agency granted the permit in September 2008.
On Dec. 3, 2008, Fluor Corp. announced that WRB Refining had awarded it a contract for the construction and construction management of process, utility, and offsites for CORE. Under this contract, Fluor will provide detailed engineering, procurement, and construction services for the refinery's utilities and offsites as well as for retrofitting portions of the existing refinery to accommodate the new Canadian feedstock. Moreover, Fluor will provide owner management team support to WRB throughout the project. An estimated 500 professionals from Fluor's offices in Calgary, Houston, and New Delhi will work on this latest project.
Previously (in 2006/2007), Fluor performed front-end engineering and design (FEED) work for all process and utilities and offsites for the entire CORE project. The latest contract reflects the transition into detailed execution.
The expansion is scheduled to conclude in 2011.