MAN Energy Solutions Salt Reactor Shipment

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MAN supplying three salt-powered reactor systems to the Wanhua Chemical Group.

MAN Energy Solutions built large salt-operated reactors for a new maleic anhydride plant for the production of biodegradable plastic. The three reactors, each weighing 655 tons, have now been loaded onto the 135-meter-long Danube ship “Excelsior” at the MAN Energy Solutions site in Deggendorf, Germany. The reactors will first be transported via the Danube to the Romanian port of Constanta, from where they will then reach their destination in the Chinese city of Yantai (Shandong province) by ocean-going vessel.

The salt-operated reactors each measure nearly 7 meters in height and around 12 meters in diameter. Each reactor consists of 38,500 tubes with an operating temperature of up to 450°C. The high temperature allowance permits a significant thermal efficiency rating, which means that more of the energy produced by the reactor can be converted into useful work.


Turbines are a critical component in the process of salt reactors. The turbines are used to convert the thermal energy generated by the nuclear reactions within the reactor into mechanical energy, which can be used to drive a generator that produces electrical energy. The customer is Wanhua Chemical Group, a Chinese chemical products supplier. The three salt bath reactors produce maleic anhydride. This chemical product is in turn required for the production of PBAT (polybutylene adipate terephthalate), a raw material for biodegradable plastics. The production plant for maleic anhydride will have a total capacity of 200,000 tons per year.