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Plant Expansions: BASF to increase capacity for AEOA in Germany; Milliken to expand clarifier capacity with new US plant



BASF to increase capacity for AEOA in Germany

German chemical firm BASF will increase the production capacity of Alkylethanolamines (AEOA) by 20% at its site in Ludwigshafen, Germany. After the start-up in 2020, BASF’s global annual nameplate capacity of AEOA will be more than 110,000 tonnes/year at its production facilities in Ludwigshafen, Germany; Geismar, US; and Nanjing, China.

AEOAs are mainly used as precursors for flocculants applied in water treatment and in the coatings industry where they act as binders between pigments and resins. Other applications include gas treatment, fabric softeners, lubricants in metal working fluids and polyurethanes.

With about 300 different amines, BASF says it has the world’s most diverse portfolio of this type of chemical intermediates. Along with alkyl-, alkanol- and alkoxyalkylamines, the company offers heterocyclic and aromatic as well as specialty amines. The range is completed by an expanding portfolio of chiral amines of high optical and chemical purity. The versatile products are used mainly to manufacture process chemicals, pharmaceuticals and crop protection products, as well as cosmetic products and detergents. They also serve to produce coatings, special plastics, composites and special fibres.

Milliken to expand clarifier capacity with new US plant

In other news, US-based additives supplier Milliken has started building the largest clarifier plant in its history in Blacksburg, South Carolina. The world-class plant is due to begin operations in 2020 and will boost capacity of Milliken’s Millad NX 8000 clarifier by approximately 50%. It says the expansion is needed to meet fast-growing global demand for this polypropylene additive that is helping users to realize significant sustainability and performance advantages.

It says that demand for Millad NX 8000 is growing in every geographical region and across many end-use markets, with the strongest growth in Asia.

Milliken says its Millad NX 8000 offers many sustainability and performance advantages over previous polypropylene (PP) clarifier generations for plastic moUlders and brand owners who use it. “In contrast to previous generation clarifier technologies, Millad NX 8000 has the potential to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions for plastic manufacturers,” says Zach Adams, global product line manager for Milliken’s Plastic Additives business. “Our propriety technology improves the aesthetics and processability of polypropylene, a plastic which is lightweight, has a low carbon footprint and almost always performs better than less sustainable plastics in a life cycle analysis.”

Underwriters Laboratories (UL) has validated that the processing of resin containing Millad NX 8000 requires lower energy consumption than other PP that uses third-generation clarifiers, allowing the UL eco-label to be used on those products. Lower processing temperatures are benefitting users with energy savings.

“Brand owners are increasingly recognizing the value of adding the UL eco-label to their products, given that polypropylene clarified with Millad NX 8000 has been shown to provide energy savings of 8 to 15% in their injection moulded, transparent products,” Adams notes. “These firms also see the use of this UL label on their packaging as enhancing their brands at a time when sustainability has never been more important.”

Millad NX 8000 creates opportunities to replace less sustainable plastics such as polystyrene and PVC with NX UltraClear PP, a type of PP that can only be produced using the Millad NX 8000 clarifier, according to Milliken.

(PRA)


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