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Reuters: Shell San Francisco ops upset by outage -spokesman

Mon Mar 12, 2007 4:56 AM BST

HOUSTON, March 11 (Reuters) – Shell Oil Co.’s (RDSa.L: Quote, Profile , Research) 156,000 barrel per day (bpd) San Francisco Bay-area refinery in Martinez was “not at normal operations” on Sunday night as the plant struggles to restart boilers shut since Friday, a refinery spokesman said.

Those carbon monoxide boilers that are closed supply steam to the refinery’s gasoline-producing 73,000 bpd fluidic catalytic cracking (FCC) unit along with other units, said spokesman Steve Lesher.

Steam is most often used in an FCC to boost feedstock hydrocarbons and catalyst through the cracking process and into the area where the catalyst is separated from the hydrocarbons.

No date has been set for completing the repair work, Lesher said.

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