A new refinery in India started operating this week. State-owned IndianOil announced on Monday that it has begun the process of commissioning its 15 MMTPA Paradip Refinery in Odisha, eastern India.

Crude processing started in the Atmospheric & Vacuum unit (AVU) on Sunday, producing products such as LPG, naphtha, kerosene, gas oil and reduced coke oil (RCO). Some of these products will require further processing in secondary units and these are currently being prepared for commissioning.

According to Sanjiv Singh, refineries director at IndianOil, the whole complex is likely to take about six to eight months to become fully operational in an integrated manner.

Built at cost of almost $5.5 billion, the new refinery is designed to process a range of feedstocks, including cheaper high sulphur heavy crudes. It is configured to produce LPG, propylene, motor spirit, aviation fuel (ATF) and high-speed diesel fuel (HSD). The refinery will produce Euro-IV/Euro-V quality transportation fuels.

First-time technological features of the Paradip Refinery include flue gas desulfurization facilities and a vapor recovery system from jetty loading, both of which will help minimize harmful emissions.

The INDMAX unit (4.17 MMTPA) currently under construction at the site is based on technology developed by IndianOil. Once successful at Paradip, the company hopes to make this technology commercially available in the international market.

Products will be distributed from the new refinery via pipeline, road and rail as well as through the project's South Oil Jetty.