Warren Kennedy

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Warren Kennedy
Senior Vice President/Marketing and Sales Director
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Fractionator Capacity Upgrade

Fractionator Capacity Upgrade

Location: Bushton, Kan.

Client: ONEOK Hydrocarbon LP

Completion Date: September 2008

For ONEOK Hydrocarbon LP’s Bushton, Kan., fractionator capacity upgrade, Burns & McDonnell served as the lead consultant for engineer-procure-construct (EPC) services. Burns & McDonnell designed and installed a new deethanizer tower, amine regenerator and molecular sieve drying unit and revamped nearly 75 percent of the fractionation facility.

The Bushton, Kan., plant previously had two existing fractionation trains — a standalone fractionator and an integrated fractionator, each of which could process 40,000 barrels per day (bpd) of natural gas liquid for a total of 80,000 bpd. Six years earlier, the standalone fractionator was decommissioned, and, as of 2005, the plant processed a maximum of 40,000 bpd. In order to support ONEOK’s new 750-mile natural gas liquid (NGL) pipeline from Opal, Wyo, to central Kansas, the Bushton, Kan., plant would need to process 140,000 bpd.

  • Engineering
  • Procurement
  • Construction

The 750-mile pipeline was part of a separate project, transporting Y-grade NGL feed. NGL is a mixture of ethane, propane, butane, isobutane and natural gasolines. The Bushton fractionator’s major product is ethane/propane (E/P), which is treated with amine to remove carbon dioxide, dried in the molecular sieve to remove water, then either stored on-site or piped to Mont Belvieu, Texas. ONEOK processes the remaining minor products for other manufacturers.

This fractionator capacity upgrade will increase the production of NGL products in the United States by nearly 10 percent and, ultimately, will reduce U.S. dependence on foreign energy resources. The added production capacity will also increase profits for ONEOK and enable the company to leverage its position in the booming NGL market.

Burns & McDonnell provided  front-end project planning (FEP) services to define the project, including FEP-2, FEP-3 and definitive cost estimate to secure project funding approval. The scope of work included all detailed design work required for construction, procurement services for materials and equipment, and construction services.

The team began detailed design on the project in January 2007 and completed construction just 21 months later, in September 2008. The fractionation facility started production in record time in October 2008.

  • Revamp existing units:
    • Standalone (SA) fractionator
    • Integrated (INT) fractionator
  • Construct new units:
    • Amine product treating system
    • Molecular sieve product drying system
    • Perco natural gas treating unit
  • Purchase and install new equipment:
    • INT fractionator deethanizer (80,000 bpd/day)
    • SA and INT deethanizer heat exchanger trains
    • SA and INT depropanizer heat exchanger trains
    • SA and INT debutanizer heat exchanger trains
    • SA and INT deisobutanizer heat exchanger trains
    • SA fractionator cooling tower (30,000 gpm)