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Pörner Group hands over to IOCL Barauni a new Biturox® plant: Bitumen for more than 1,000 km expressways per year

India’s ambitious infrastructure projects for traffic congestion raise the annual bitumen demand from 4.8 to 7 million tons within the next years. Hence, the Indian Oil Company Ltd. (IOCL), India’s largest commercial enterprise, invested in another bitumen plant. In February 2017, IOCL commissioned together with the Pörner Group, the bitumen technology global leader, a new Biturox® bitumen plant, at Barauni Refinery, near Patna in East India. This is the 4th plant operated by IOCL based on Biturox® technology. Pörner again provided the license and engineering services.

Barauni Refinery in East India now operates a Biturox® plant for production of 150,000 TPA road paving bitumen.


India‘s bitumen demand is exceeding the national production


India‘s road infrastructure amounts to approx. 5.5 million km, thus being the second largest road network in the world, after the USA. India’s National Highways cover only 2% and only about 60% of the roads are asphalted actually. [1] 

Therefore the road network development is one of the main targets for the Indian government. As a very important construction material bitumen in first class quality plays an essential role for this. Because of the ambitious expansion programs such as the East-West and North-South corridors[2] across India, the annual bitumen consumption is going to increase from lately 4.8 million tons up to 7 million within the next seven years[3].


By the middle of the century, India expects to become the most highly populated country and the third-largest economy after USA and China in the world. The development of new cities and the expected comprehensive industrialization require rapid improvements of the infrastructure, especially the road networks.

Therefore the construction of additional approx. 19,000 km expressways is planned up to 2022[4]. Bitumen produced by Biturox® is an essential contribution to an economic construction and long lifetime of these roadways.



Biturox® plant for high-quality road paving bitumen


Presently about 65% of India’s bitumen is produced in Pörner Biturox® plants. By now ten of India’s 23 refineries[5] produce bitumen with high viscosity by Biturox® plants.

To reduce bitumen imports, IOCL invested in construction of a new bitumen plant with proven Pörner Biturox® technology for bitumen with high viscosity grades. Since February 2017 the plant has been producing on-spec road paving bitumen VG-10, 20, 30 & 40 with a capacity of 150,000 TPA, sufficient for paving 1,000 km expressways per year.


The Biturox® process provides IOCL a high flexibility in the choice of feedstock: it is possible to process refinery intermediate products VR (vacuum residues) as well as HVGO (heavy vacuum gas oil) from different crudes of the Middle East.

“We now have one of most up-to-date bitumen plant in the world that meets all quality requirements” says Mr. Shukla, Executive Director, Barauni Refinery who was pleased on successful commissioning.


The Pörner scope of services comprised licensing, tests in the Pörner laboratories, basic engineering, supply of core components as well as commissioning support and personnel training.

The new Biturox® plant in Barauni is the fourth plant for the IOCL licensed by Pörner after 1994 (Chennai Refinery), 2001 (Gujarat Refinery) and 2010 (Mathura Refinery).


The Pörner Mission


„In India roads have to withstand extremely weather conditions due to the monsoon and locally broad temperature ranges. It is therefore all the more important, that India implemented the bitumen viscosity standards 25 years ago - with our assistance by the way. These standards enable to clearly evaluate the bitumen quality. This is an important economic factor because, the better the quality, the less is the road damage caused by weather conditions. We are pleased that the Pörner Group participates in the sub-continent development.“ says Pörner Managing Director Andreas Pörner.


As world market leader in the bitumen oxidation technology Pörner granted the 50th license recently and has been investing continuously in the Biturox® process development for more than 35 years.


IOCL - Indian Oil Company Ltd.


IOCL India’s largest commercial enterprise with 33,000-strong work-force currently has been making an important contribution to India’s energy industry for over a half century[6]. Recently IOCL invested about EUR 6.5 billion in modernisation of its eleven refineries, pipeline capacities, infrastructure extension and product quality improvement.


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Media echo (excerpt):

ChemicalEngineering 04/05/2017 (E)

Process Worldwide 05/05/2017 (E)

Leading Austrian Companies 12/12/2017 (E)


Lydia Brandtner

Head of Marketing Pörner Group

Tel.: +43 5 05899-718