Renewable Fuels

When it comes to renewable fuels, KPE leads by example.

In 2020, more than twenty (20) U.S. refiners announced plans to convert or build new renewable diesel facilities; but nearly all of these “announcements” languished in the planning and feasibility stage. There are currently only nine (9) operating Renewable Diesel facilities in the U.S., and only three (3) of these were “grassroots” facilities rather than revamps of existing hydroprocessing facilities. In March 2020, KPE was awarded the EPCm contract for the ISBL portion of a 9,000 BPD renewable diesel unit. Thus KPE has executed what will become just the fourth grassroots renewable diesel production plant in the U.S. in Artesia, New Mexico. Shortly after the EPCm contract was awarded, was also asked by the client to provide an FEL-2 level review and cost estimate for another location’s conversion of a naphtha hydrotreater to a Renewable Diesel facility.

Artesia Renewable Diesel Project

Our EPCm contract in 2020 followed awards to KPE in 2019 for preliminary engineering (FEL-2) and FEED package development (FEL-3). In essence, the RDU project was actually three (3) separate projects from an execution point of view. Each phase required different project development and execution skills. The EPCm contract includes engineering design, procurement services and construction management support (EPCm). Throughout the execution phase of this project, KPE has worked collaboratively with the technology provider to optimize and refine their HydroFlex technology by incorporating hydroprocessing solutions from KPE’s refining applications into the renewable diesel design, and in doing so, have helped to improve the unit operation and safety. These “value added'' improvements are incorporated into licensed designs that technology providers create for other customers. In this way, our clients get an early benefit from KPE’s experience in these renewable fuel projects.

KPE’s hydrotreating experience, a natural segue to RDUs

KPE earned the Artesia RDU project through our longstanding expertise and success in the execution of conventional hydroprocessing units for the customer and others before it. In essence, our customer recognized that a renewable diesel plant is ultimately a special application of our hydroprocessing expertise and experience. We believe our prospects find value in our hydroprocessing experience summarized as follows:

  • Nearly 20% of our resume of 650+ jobs are in the hydroprocessing area (>110 jobs).
  • Hydrotreating experience includes all phases of project development and execution (FEL-1/2/3/4/5)
  • Hydrotreating design/build experience includes licensed units and open art designs.
  • Hydrotreating experience with technology licensors across the glove
  • Hydrotreater experience includes low pressure units (<700 psig), high pressure units (700-1200 psig), and mild hydrocracking units (>2000 psig).
  • Hydrotreating feedstocks have included light and heavy naphtha, kerosene, diesel, gas oils, lube oils, waxes, FCC gasoline, and vegetable oils.
  • Hydrotreater experience includes relevant metallurgical design knowledge for the hot reactor circuit.
  • Design experience includes grassroots units and revamps of existing units.
  • Renewables/Biomass experience includes renewable diesel, biodiesel, and digestion.
  • Additional hydroprocessing experience includes hydrogen and syngas plants.

Our project history includes the design and/or supply of various downstream processing units, including syngas process units, both “open art” designs and licensed technologies. Additionally, KPE has significant experience designing process modules, producing modular alternatives for traditional layouts, and cost-effectively transporting modules to job sites. We are confidently staffed with senior-level personnel - our average experience is 20+ years with multiple P.E. licensed staff - thereby enabling us to provide a level of creativity, productivity, and experience that is unmatched in the EPC industry.

KPE is flexible in its contracting strategies and extraordinarily customer-focused

KPE’s typical scope of responsibility for downstream projects includes both ISBL and OSBL work. We routinely streamline process designs and lower project risks through personnel experience, robust engineering, and our diverse background. Our company was founded based on a lump-sum, fixed-price contracting model and our staff is trained to incorporate improvements to optimize project profitability, regardless of the commercial execution strategy. Due to our well-known hydrotreating and renewable diesel experience, numerous confidential clients have contacted KPE to evaluate their renewable fuel projects. We have helped many of them with our experience, technical expertise, project development and execution capabilities, and our ability to provide needed technical and commercial information to support project funding. We have been flexible with our pricing structure to assist several clients during the planning stages of these innovative projects.

Related Resources
News 03/17/2020

HollyFrontier Awards Renewable Diesel EPCm Contract to KP Engineering - KP Engineering

Tyler, Texas– 3.17.2020 – KP Engineering (“KPE”) has been awarded an EPCm contract by Artesia Renewable Diesel Company LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of HollyFrontier Corporation (NYSE: HFC) to provide engineering, procurement services and construction management (EPCm) for the on-site portion of a new Renewable Diesel production facility.

Blog Posts 03/15/2021

The "Drive" to Renewable Fuels

With an increasing number of oil and gas companies committing to be net-zero by 2050, it is clear that the demand for renewable energy is not going away.

Contact our team today to discuss your renewable project needs.