New business

EPCM KOH production project


To strengthen its market position, chemical production company INOVYN drew up a new business case for its Lillo location. In doing so, Inovyn – at the time it was a joint venture between Solvay and Ineos, now it’s 100% Ineos – aimed to further develop its chlorine strategy. The new business opportunity consists of replacing caustic soda (NaOH) with potassium hydroxide (KOH) as a by-product of chlorine production.

INOVYN is a chemical production company that is part of the INEOS groep. In Antwerp chlorine is produced with sodium hydroxide (NaOH, otherwise known as caustic soda) as a by-product. The use of a different salt as a raw material produces potassium hydroxide (KOH) as a by-product, with which could serve new markets.

The project consisted of:

  • the addition of several new production units
  • the conversion/tie-in of part of the existing installations


INOVYN produced the basic design package and then approached the market for the EPCm phase. KH Engineering was chosen because in KH Engineering, INOVYN found the open and transparent partner it was seeking. This partner philosophy was rolled out with the classic division of roles during the Engineering and Procurement phase and was further extended by the creation of an integrated team for construction management.

During the start-up phase of the EPCm assignment, scans were made for the tie-ins with the existing process systems. At the client’s request, these tie-ins were largely realised during two shut downs. The scans were also combined with the 3D design in order to maximise the efficiency of the reviews.

The project

The multidisciplinary design was partly carried out on site and partly in the office. The instrumentation part was carried out online where possible, on INOVYN’s Smart Plant Intools (SPI) database.

Apart from the ‘long lead items’ ordered by INOVYN during the basic engineering phase, KHE took care of the complete procurement ‘in name and on behalf of’ Inovyn, including desk expediting and co-ordination of the shop inspections.

The construction management team, led by the INOVYN Construction Manager, was responsible for Mechanical Completion, including pre-commissioning and handling of the punchlist items.

Benefit to the client

The partnership approach of KH Engineering is aprreciated by INOVYN.

This investment makes INOVYN a market leader in providing continuity of supply to customers, demonstrating the company’s long-term commitment to the potassium hydroxide KOH market.

Before start of the project INOVYN reward The appointment of KH Engineering is the next step forward in realising our project and we remain on track to start KOH production in Antwerp at the end of 2017.

Comments by Frans Jansen, CEO of KH Engineering: “We are very pleased to have received this contract from INOVYN, a world-class player, which demonstrates its confidence in our combined Antwerp-Schiedam Task Force. This strategic project will support the further development of our Antwerp business.”

Projectleider: Teus Walpot

More projects: