Marathon Galveston Bay Texas hydrocracker operating after upset, sources say

Credit: REUTERS/Julio Cesar Chavez

By Erwin Seba

HOUSTON, March 13 (Reuters) - A hydrocracker was operating on Wednesday at Marathon Petroleum’s MPC.N 593,000 barrel-per-day Galveston Bay Refinery in Texas City, Texas, following a Tuesday night malfunction, said people familiar with plant operations.

The small alkylation unit remained shut on Wednesday after failing to restart last week following the completion of a multi-unit overhaul, the sources said.

Marathon spokesperson Jamal Kheiry declined to comment on Wednesday.

The 60,000 bpd Ultracracker diesel-producing hydrocracker sustained the outage of a hydrogen compressor charge pump on Tuesday night, according to a notice the company filed with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

The 10,000-bpd alkylation unit remains shut after problems developed while attempting to restart on March 6, the sources said.

Hydrocrackers use high heat and pressure in the presence of hydrogen and a catalyst to convert feedstocks like gas oil into diesel and other motor fuels.

Alkylation units convert refining byproducts into octane boosting components used to make premium grades of gasoline.

The Ultracracker is scheduled to undergo an overhaul beginning in September.

(Reporting by Erwin Seba; Editing by Leslie Adler and Nick Zieminski)

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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