BP is at the forefront of research and technology in the petrochemicals field, and Hull is one of our principle global centres for petrochemicals research and technology. In addition, Hull hosts part of BP’s Centre of Expertise in Applied Chemistry and Physics (AC&P).
BP is one of the world-class chemicals and energy businesses which operate from Saltend Chemicals Park.
Our facility in Hull manufactures acetic acid and acetic anhydride. Both chemicals are key building blocks for a wide range of applications including paints, coatings and washing detergents, as well as the preservation of food. Acetic acid is one of the most versatile organic chemicals, with applications in almost every industry and acetic anhydride is a powerful acetylating agent used in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals and detergents.
Over the past 50 years, BP has supported the local community with a number of partnerships. These include the Schools Link programme, which was launched in 1968, 26 years of support for the Humberside Police Lifestyle project, as well as Hull Children’s University, Humber Business Week and Hull Pride. BP was also one of the original private companies whose support helped the city win the bid for Hull, UK City of Culture 2017. And, employees at the Hull site have raised more than £200,000 for local charities in the last nine years.
BP has been researching technologies in the UK for more than 100 years.
The Cativa® process is a world-leading technology and a pioneering approach to making acetic acid. Cativa® is the method used for producing acetic acid by carbonylation of methanol using an iridium catalyst system. This technology was developed by a team in Hull in the 1990s and commercialised in 1995.
Teams in Hull have also developed the SaaBre™ process – a new route for the production of acetic acid by converting synthesis gas directly to acetic acid in a proprietary, integrated three-step process. Find out more about SaaBre™.