Polyethylene Production

LDPE Production

When LDPE (low-density polyethylene) is produced process licenses from Exxon, Lyondellbasell, Dow, Versalis and Sabic are used. A free radical polymerization is triggered when he feedstock (ethylene, C2H4) is compressed by the booster/primary compressor up to 300 bara and the unique Burckhardt Compression Hyper Compressor solution compresses the ethylene up to 3’000 bara. In the LDPE reactor, catalysts allow the polymerization at temperatures of 200 – 300 °C. In the following high and low pressure separator the app. 30% yield is collected and later on extruded to the final product as resin. The remaining 70% are recycled back to the booster stages of the booster/primary compressor. The involved booster/primary and Hyper compressors deal with High pressure gases that are contaminated with abrasives and solids. This requires high-performing compressor components for the Hyper compressor as well as for booster/primary compressor such as rings and packings as well as reliable compressor valves.

Burckhardt Compression offers its compressor solutions as complete turn-key installations, engineered packages or bare frame compressors. As a compressor OEM with more than 170 years of experience we have been setting standards for leading valves and sealing technology. With our broad in-house expertise we are able to select the ideal components for longest mean time between overhaul (MTBO) of your LDPE compressor solutions.


HDPE & LLDPE Production

HDPE (high-density polyethylene) & LLDPE (linear-low density polyethylene) are produced according to processes licensed by e.g. Ineos, Dow ans Lyondellbasell. These process with specific catalysts allows the polymerization of ethylene (C2H4) at relatively low temperatures and pressures of up to 50 bara. The difference to LDPE is the higher degree of branching between the relatively shorter molecules. At HDPE and LLDPE production the reciprocating compressors deal with gases that are contaminated with abrasives and solids and require robust piston and rod sealing solutions.

Burckhardt Compression’s leading labyrinth sealing technology on pistons and packings eliminates the need for sealing rings. The insensitivity of the Laby® technology to contaminated gases helps to maximize the plant up-time and yields of polyethylene production while minimizing the OPEX costs for the compressor solution.