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Resins & Coatings

News Review


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Scientists work on "green" Polyurethanes

Loved for their toughness and corrosion resistance, but not so much any more for their petroleum base, polyurethanes are getting new green roots at U.S. Washington State University.
There, researchers are using canola and other plant oils to cook up new plastics. The resulting products feature a wide degree of flexibility, stiffness and shapes, according to a research announcement by Michael Kessler of the School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering.
Polyurethanes are extremely tough and corrosion- and wear-resistant. About 14 million MT of polyurethanes were produced globally in 2010, and production is expected to increase by almost 30% by 2016. According to a recent publication by Transparency Market Research, the global thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) industry is expected to grow at a rate of 5.5% during 2013-2018, reaching about USD 1,75 billion by 2018. The global TPU market stood at USD 987.2 million in 2010 (source: SpecialChem).
In this study, the researchers made polyurethane using olive, canola, grape seed, linseed and castor oils. Plant oils are inexpensive, readily available, renewable and can be genetically engineered.
The novelty of this particular work is that these polyurethanes are using a new chemistry made by a combination of castor oil fatty acid and modified vegetable oils.

Brenntag acquires Quimicas Merono

Brenntag acquired Quimicas Merono, S.L., a distributor of industrial chemicals based close to Cartagena, Spain. The company is holding a strong coverage in the Murcia region, which is a solid part of the main Mediterranean industrial axis, focusing on logistics, blends and storage services to its industrial customers.
Karsten Beckmann, CEO of Brenntag Europe, Middle East and Africa said: "The acquisition perfectly complements Brenntag's regional distribution network in Eastern Spain. With Quimicas Merono we gain access to various key European accounts and additional growth opportunities, especially in key industry sectors such as Food and Oil & Gas".
Brenntag, the global market leader in chemical distribution, covers all major markets with its extensive product and service portfolio. Headquartered in Muelheim an der Ruhr, Germany, the company operates a global network with more than 490 locations in 72 countries. In 2014, the company, which has a global workforce of more than 13,500, generated sales of EUR 10 billion.

BASF acquires Polyisobutene knowhow from Lanxess

BASF has agreed to acquire the polyisobutene business of compatriot chemical producer Lanxess for an undisclosed sum. The two companies said the deal concerns for the most part intellectual property for a new, innovative technology to produce high molecular weight polyisobutene (HM PIB).
Under the terms of the transaction, Lanxess will produce the new HM PIB for BASF in its existing facilities under a long term toll manufacturing agreement, and BASF will market the products under the "Oppanol" trademark.
Martin Widmann, senior vice president of BASF's global business unit Fuel & Lubricant Solutions, said acquiring the Lanxess technology will result in enhanced security of HM PIB supply as it provides the basis for a long term oriented sustainable growth with high quality products for a broad range of applications.

Nippon Shokubai builds new plants in Belgium

Nippon Shokubai has confirmed plans to expand production of superabsorbent polymer (SAP) and build an acrylic acid plant in Belgium with an investment of EUR 350 million.
Planned to be located at the company's headquarter site in Antwerp, the new facility will add 100,000 MT/y to Nippon Shokubai's current SAP capacity of 60,000 MT/y at the complex. Mechanical completion of the projects is expected to be complete in October 2017 with plans to begin commercial operation in May 2018.
The latest investment will allow the company to ensure stable supply of SAP and its main raw material acrylic acid. The project will increase Nippon Shokubai's global SAP and acrylic acid annual production capacities to 710,000 MT and 880,000 MT respectively.
(Chemicals Technology)

WACKER reports strong first quarter

Wacker Chemie AG raised its sales forecast for full-year 2015 following a good performance in the first quarter. The company generated total sales of EUR 1,334.9 million from January through March 2015 (Q1 2014: EUR 1,157.4 million), up by more than 15% year on year and almost 12% quarter on quarter (Q4 2014: EUR 1,194.5 million).
The main reason for this growth was higher volumes than in the previous year, especially for solar silicon and semiconductor wafers. The positive effects of a weaker euro were another decisive factor in sales growth.
WACKER has raised its sales forecast for full-year 2015 slightly. The company now projects that Group sales will be around 10% higher than the 2014 figure of EUR 4.83 billion.
"WACKER made a good start to 2015 during the first quarter", said CEO Rudolf Staudigl. "All of our divisions posted double-digit sales growth. Global demand for our products is strong. In addition, we are benefiting from positive exchange-rate effects. Given our good start, we are optimistic that business operations will continue to develop positively during the remainder of the year".

Tronox reports lower Q1

Tronox Ltd reported first quarter 2015 revenue of USD 385 million compared to USD 418 million in Q1 of 2014 and USD 400 million in Q4 of 2014.
Tom Casey, chairman and CEO of Tronox, said: "Despite more challenging global market conditions than those of a year ago, we delivered significant increases in operating income, adjusted EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA margin in both Pigment and Mineral Sands in the first quarter. In Pigment, although sales were lower than a year ago, adjusted EBITDA of USD 26 million and adjusted EBITDA margin of 11% improved from USD 17 million and 6%, respectively, in the prior-year quarter. We also believe that when the industry recovery occurs, our vertical integration positions us to more rapidly benefit from that recovery, as we capture the enhanced margin at both feedstock and pigment levels".
Tronox Limited is a global leader in the mining, production and marketing of inorganic minerals and chemicals. Tronox closed the acquisition of Alkali Chemicals on April 1, 2015 and now owns and operates two vertically integrated inorganic minerals businesses, each of which has structural cost advantages: Tronox Titanium Dioxide (TiO2), which mines titanium ore and produces TiO2 pigments, and Tronox Alkali, which mines trona ore and produces natural soda ash.

Albemarle acquires Chemal

Chemetall, a global business unit of Albemarle Corp. announced that it has acquired the business of Chemal GmbH & Co. KG, based in Hamm, Germany. This transaction will enhance Chemetall's integrated portfolio for the aluminum finishing industry.
Founded in 1975, Chemal GmbH & Co. KG specializes in research and development of surface finishing chemicals for aluminum and its alloys with emphasis on nodizing and pretreatment technologies. With an extensive history of success, Chemal has become a reference point for the surface finishing of aluminum.
"Consisting of advanced pretreatment and anodizing technologies, Chemetall is one of the few players globally positioned with a comprehensive product range for the aluminum finishing industry", says Joris Merckx, president of Chemetall. "This transaction will expand our expertise in this market and, combined with strong technical services offered by our wholly-owned subsidiaries around the world, will enable us to further expand our presence in a key market".
(Chemical Engineering)

PPG introduces new e-coat

PPG Industries' industrial coatings business has introduced an new electrocoat (e-coat), a next-generation high-edge cationic-epoxy product.
Originally formulated to achieve REACH compliance in Europe, the e-coat is formulated with a proprietary metal-free catalyst that eliminates the need for dibutyl tin and other scarce or restricted heavy metals as a catalyzing agent.
"While other electrocoat manufacturers have developed new catalyzing technologies that do not require dibutyl tin, all still demand the use of alternative metal feedstock that is limited in supply and availability and highly vulnerable to price fluctuation", said Bob Enzerra, PPG product manager. "By formulating and synthesizing a catalyst that is environmentally advanced and abundant, PPG can help protect customers from future legislative and supply challenges outside their control".
(Coatings World)

Huntsman expands specialty amines capacity

The Performance Products division of Huntsman Corporation announced plans to expand capacity of specialty amines at its manufacturing facilities in Petfurdo, Hungary and in Conroe, Texas.
The new multipurpose unit at Petfurdo extends the Huntsman manufacturing portfolio, further leverages the company's integrated amines capability and increases existing specialty amine production capacity by a minimum of 20% at that plant. The expansion in Conroe will add equivalent capacity and improve the flexibility of its specialty amine unit. The new capacities are planned to go on stream by 2016.
(Coatings World)

Exhibition : Gulf Coating Show 2015

The Gulf Coating Show 2015 is a unique specialized exhibition which promotes the latest trends & technologies covering all aspects of the production of paints, varnishes, construction chemicals and adhesives.
The exhibitors represent the most important companies in the industry, including paint application systems, industrial coatings, cabinets for applying powdered paint, recovery equipment, and technology for the handling of finishes, corrosion control and prevention, among others.
The coatings sector is essential for construction. Its growth is directly linked to the growth of the construction industry in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Middle East. With mega projects across the region catching up on their targets, more demand in the coatings sector is a fact.
The conditions in the Middle East present paint and coatings manufacturers and developers with a number of challenges, not least the need for their products to stand up to an unforgiving environment, with more effort being made to design and test water-based paints, eco-friendly coatings and dust- and sand-repellant products.
The Gulf Coatings Show of 2015 is organised in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, during May 26-29.

(More upcoming events on :

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News are listed from various sources, as quoted above, aggregated by agents ANDRIANOS Chemicals, Athens, Greece.