The State of Qatar is rapidly expanding to capture almost one-third of the world's LNG market. By 2010, LNG exports from the State of Qatar are projected to reach 77 million tonnes per annum. In addition to the LNG production, there will be a sizeable quantity of by-products - condensate, propane, butane, and sulfur - as a result of the LNG production. These by-products are expected to reach production rates of approximately 80,000 m3per day (500,000 barrels per day) of condensate, 20,000 tonnes per day of propane, 13,000 tonnes per day of butane, and 12,000 tonnes per day of sulfur.
To support this expansion, the State of Qatar has embarked on a pioneering approach to the storage and loading of LNG as well as its by-products that will serve as an example of significant capital investment savings, operational flexibility, and reduced land requirements. Traditionally, dedicated storage and loading facilities (infrastructure) have been designed and built to support a specific LNG production train and its associated by-products. The State of Qatar's innovative approach has been the design and construction of a fully integrated common infrastructure to support all of the joint venture owned LNG production trains as well as other gas related projects in Ras Laffan Industrial City. This paper will describe the unique aspects of this fully integrated infrastructure, its benefits, and the complexities and challenges associated with making the vision of a fully integrated LNG infrastructure come to fruition.