Pyramax Ceramics (now Imerys) Wrens, Georgia, United States
Helping a start-up win the race to market
Responding to the American fracking boom
Under an Engineer-Procure-Construct (EPC) contract to PyraMax Ceramics (now Imerys), Alberici designed and constructed a new facility that creates small, lightweight ceramic beads known as proppant, which are used in the oil and gas industry for hydraulic fracturing. The new facility, constructed on a 20-acre greenfield site, is capable of producing 500 million pounds of ceramic proppant per year using an innovative and proprietary technology that processes high-quality kaolin clay.
Complex equipment and facilities
The $156 million project features two processing lines and supporting facilities with room for future production expansion. It includes two 12-foot-diameter kilns, a wet-screen/fluidizer structure, green pellet and finished product screen structure, storage silos, and a loadout-to-rail structure. The facility also features a unique pollution abatement system and a 30,000-square-foot building that houses administrative functions, laboratory space, main control room, warehouse, and office space.
One Team Solution
Under the EPC contract, Alberici partnered with SSOE/Clark Nexsen to provide PyraMax with a single entity responsible for all aspects of design, procurement, and construction. The Alberici team purchased major equipment and provided a full range of preconstruction services, including environmental permitting assistance and comprehensive value analysis to identify opportunities for cost savings and schedule acceleration. Upon completion, the Alberici team also performed operator training, start-up, and commissioning of the new systems.
Effective coordination and management
Through front-end definition services, Alberici identified early bid packages and partnering opportunities with select design-assist subcontractors. This allowed the project to be completed under a fast-track schedule.
Working Safely Under MSHA
Under MSHA safety guidelines, the Alberici team worked over 1 million safe workhours. During construction, Alberici managed a large, primarily local labor force that peaked at 450 on-site craft workers.