As LNG Canada’s construction activity progress has reached its going vertical stage, the $17 billion LNG plant has received three towering pieces of equipment which are critical to the gas liquefaction process for the project have arrived at the site in Kitimat.
Crews spent the second week of June offloading a 345-tonne main cryogenic heat exchanger (MCHE) and two pre-cooler units, which weigh about 308 tonnes and 284 tonnes, from the Dutch-flagged cargo ship docked at the LNG Canada project’s new material offloading facility (MOF), in Kitimat Harbour.
Often described as the “heart” of an LNG facility, MCHEs are made to liquify natural gas. Gas enters an MCHE near its base and exits at its top in a sub-cooled, liquified state, at -160 Celsius. The liquified gas is then piped to a storage tank, and from there, it is loaded onto specialized carriers for ocean transport.
Precoolers are also integral to the process, increasing efficiencies during different stages of gas liquefaction. All three pieces of infrastructure are precision engineered from aluminum and are pressure tested prior to delivery.
“Taking delivery of our first main cryogenic heat exchanger and precoolers is another significant milestone for the LNG Canada project and represents a number of firsts for us,” LNG Canada CEO Peter Zebedee stated in a press release.
To offload the equipment it was placed on a large flatbed truck, also known as a self-propelled modular transporter, which slowly moved the pieces along the project site’s three-kilometre-long haul road to the main construction area, where they will connect to other pieces of the LNG infrastructure.
“It’s our first opportunity to receive critical infrastructure at our new material offloading facility, and our first heavy equipment transport along our new haul road to our main construction site,” Zebedee stated.
The MCHE, which is the largest of the three new pieces of equipment, is approximately 50 metres in length and once it’s installed vertically, it will be among the most visible components at the LNG Canada facility.
The second MCHE unit is expected to arrive later this year with two more precoolers.
The aluminum equipment was assembled in Germany by Ireland-based Linde plc.