Fireproof coating for the largest LNG container in Nordic Countries

The Nordic Countries’ largest liquefied natural gas container has been erected this year in Röyttä, Tornio, located on the shore of Bothnian Bay in Northern Finland. The diameter is approximately 43 metres and height 50 metres. FSP performed surface treatment on the tank top process module installed on top of the container.

According to Esa Räihä, Project Manager for Caverion Industria Oy, FSP was a natural choice as the partner, as Caverion and FSP have previously worked in close co-operation.

“We chose FSP to carry out the fireproofing project because FSP is a reliable partner and the industrial leader in Finland,” Räihä sums up and continues that the two partners collaborate closely also in the Arctic 6 sales organisation.

The main contractor for the liquefied natural gas container was Wärtsilä, who had then selected Caverion Industria to build and assemble the steel structures and pipe system for the container. The estimated costs for the massive contract were approximately 100 million Euro. The main user of the natural gas will be Outokumpu’s Tornio steel mill, but the terminal will be open for the industrial operators, mines and other gas users in the area as well.

“Fireproofing was carried out in accordance with the fire load instructions issued by the Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency, Tukes. The basic principle was that the steel structures must have adequate load bearing capacity in case of fire,” explains Räihä.

Multi-phase task

The project was started in the fall of 2016 at FSP’s surface treatment plant in Raahe, where the steel structures got a fireproof coating. Next, Caverion assembled the structures into a module in Rahja, and they were transported by sea on a barge to Tornio.

Possible transport damages were repaired and touch-up paintings for the installation were made on site in Röyttä, Tornio, once the module had been lifted on top of the round container, 50 metres above the ground.

The volume of the entire gas container is approximately 50,000 cubic metres. When gas is transported to Röyttä in Tornio, it is stored, and can then be vaporised back into natural gas. The terminal also has two natural gas refuelling stations for tank truck deliveries.

The base coating and fireproofing provided the structures also with adequate protection against corrosion. At the end of the project, FSP submitted documentation on the performed fireproofing procedures.

Surface treatment on a tank top module

The tank top module, which was the target of the surface treatment project, contains process pipe systems that transport liquefied natural gas chilled to minus 162 degrees Celsius. By converting gaseous natural gas into liquefied form, the volume can be reduced into approximately one sixth, which makes transporting the gas by LNG vessels and storing it much easier and more cost-effective.

There are grand expectations for natural gas in the future. It is going to be utilised in marine traffic as well as in large-scale industries. Natural gas can be used to replace liquid gas in industrial processes and fuel oil in heat generation, and it is also used as fuel in land and maritime transport.

Terminal commissioned in early 2018

The first gas vessel is scheduled to arrive at the Tornio terminal in November 2017, and the actual handover to the owner of the terminal will take place in early 2018. The terminal is owned by Manga LNG Oy, whose customer base includes Outokumpu Oyj, SSAB, Skangas Oy and EPV Energy Ltd.

The LNG terminal in Tornio provides the North with a new, clean energy option, which promotes the protection of the unique natural landscape.

During the last few years, FSP has carried out fireproofing at several locations, including e.g. the process pipe systems at the Neste oil refinery and Neste data centres built in Finland. In Sweden, FSP has performed fireproofing work at e.g. Volvo Penta’s facility in Gothenburg. In addition to fireproofing, FSP has also performed traditional anti-corrosive coatings at the locations.