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Hydrogenation Unit, Speyer

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Investing in the future at the Haltermann Carless Speyer site

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Hydrogenation plant at a glance:

  • Capacity: 100,000 t of hydrogenated product – depending on feedstock
  • 450+ tons of steel used (equivalent to approx. 600 sports cars)
  • 13+ km of piping
  • 2,000 m3 concrete
  • 240 safety-related circuits
  • 721 million m2 of catalyst surface (roughly equivalent to the size of the city Hamburg in Germany)
  • More than 300,000 external working hours (equivalent to approx. 35 man-years at 24/7)

Introducing our new hydrogenation unit


Joachim-Becher-Straße 1
67346 Speyer
Phone: +49 6232 134 0

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Email : Hydrogenation Speyer

From strategy to implementation

For Haltermann Carless, there have been important landmarks guiding our strategy for over 160 years: Our customers and sustainable growth. For us, these are commitments that we all deliver on every day. 

With the construction of the hydrogenation plant at the Speyer site in Germany, we have implemented this strategy for the sustainable growth of our customers and for the production of environmentally sound products.

The investment in a modern and sustainable technology offers us many opportunities for further growth, to respond to the needs of the market and at the same time to secure jobs in this region. Within Haltermann Carless, this is the largest investment since becoming part of the HCS Group.

Hydrogenation Speyer ground-breaking ceremony

In July 2019, Haltermann Carless celebrated the symbolic ground-breaking ceremony at the production site in Speyer, DE, marking the start of construction of the new hydrogenation plant; pictured is Mrs Seiler, Mayor of the City of Speyer (centre).

Product advantages for Cyclopentane and Middle Distillates

The hydrogenation plant is a flexible production unit in which a wide variety of feedstocks can be processed for the manufacture of Middle Distillates and Pentanes. It allows Haltermann Carless to produce a range of Middle Distillate products of high purity and very low aromatics. These are important customer and market requirements, especially for printing ink manufacturers. For the Pentanes product line, the new plant is important for the expansion of capacity volumes, above all of Cyclopentane, a blowing agent that is in great demand worldwide for the insulation industry. In addition, the hydrogenation plant will facilitate new and future product development. 


The product portfolio of Pentanes and Middle Distillates has clear added value.

Middle distillates offer a wide range of applications with individual performance characteristics. Among others, they are used in printing inks, silicone sealants, lubricants or metalworking fluids. 

The new hydrogenation plant enables the production of 

  • products with reduced and almost free aromatics content,
  • high product purity and
  • novel products.

Learn more

Middle distillates

Pentanes are important blowing agents in insulations for house construction, in insulating materials for refrigerators or in foaming gels in the cosmetics sector. 

The new hydrogenation plant enables the production of 

  • significantly higher capacity volumes for the world market - especially of Cyclopentane, the most valuable of the three isomers (n-, iso-, Cyclopentane), as well as of
  • new types of products.

Learn more


Added value for customers, society and community

We deliberately chose the Speyer production site because it offers the best conditions in terms of workforce resources, plant capacities and logistics

The investment in a hydrogenation plant enables further growth in important business areas to support energy efficiency, new opportunities to develop sustainable products and efficient production technologies, as well as other numerous benefits:


For our customers

  • Improved product qualities, such as higher purity and lowest aromatics content
  • A significant increase in capacity volumes for Cyclopentane
  • Expansion of the product portfolio
  • Reliable delivery performance due to new on-site storage capacities

For our future

  • Processing a greater variety of feedstock leading to stable product supply
  • Production of modern products that are needed for the implementation of sustainable initiatives, such as improving energy efficiency
  • High production flexibility allows us to respond to market demands at short notice
  • Largest global producer of Cyclopentane
  • Strengthening the Speyer site
  • Securing jobs and retaining skilled workers

For more sustainability

  • Lower waste, waste water and emissions in the production process
  • Products with lowest aromatic content
  • Modern and green energy generation through on-site hydrogen production plant
Community Speyer

For our neighbours

  • Modern and forward-looking employer in the region
  • Offerings apprenticeship training in the field of chemistry
  • Close ties with the city of Speyer since 1965

Technical overview of the hydrogenation plant 

Modern plant at the state-of-the-art technology

In the hydrogenation plant, the unsaturated hydrocarbon bonds (such as aromatics and olefins) that are in the feedstock are converted into saturated molecular bonds by adding hydrogen. This leads to the production of purer Middle Distillates and Pentane grades.

Three types of raw material can be treated in the hydrogenation plant:

    1. The first type of raw material is Pentanes, a mixture of short-chain hydrocarbons from the alkane group. 
    2. The second type of raw material is naphtha, also a mixture of hydrocarbons, which is roughly equivalent to straight-run gasoline. 
    3. The third type of raw material is gasoil, a mixture of hydrocarbons that is very similar to diesel fuel. 

The crude products gasoil and naphtha are stored in existing tanks. A new tank farm is built for the raw material pentanes and the intermediate products produced in the hydrogenation process.

Hydrogenation Speyer

Take a look at our photo series on the developments of the hydrogenation plant at the Speyer site

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