Covestro expands global capacity for polyurethane dispersions; plant in China


Germany-headquartered Covestro has begun operations at a new production facility for aqueous polyurethane dispersions (PUDs) at its Dormagen site in Germany. Along with a current expansion of production in Barcelona, Spain, the company is thus boosting its capacities in Europe significantly. In order to meet global demand, Covestro is also building a new facility in China, as well as planning to resume production in the US and at the same time modernising and expanding facilities there.

The new capacity is primarily needed to satisfy rising demand from the coatings and adhesives industry: manufacturers remain determined to replace solvent-based products with more sustainable waterborne systems that have equally good properties. Also driving the trend are regulations that require lower emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOC).

“With these investments, we are preparing for the continued growing demand for polyurethane dispersions as well as expanding our globally leading position,” says Michael Friede, global head of the Coatings, Adhesives, Specialties segment at Covestro. “At the same time, thanks to our diversified production, we have the flexibility to meet many different requirements.”

This diversity is also the key to the comprehensive line of polyurethane dispersions (PUDs) that Covestro offers. “Our custom-tailored products allow for many applications in very different industries,” Michael Friede explains. “In this way, we create opportunities for growth and strengthen our customers’ competitiveness.”

As the leading global supplier of PUDs, Covestro says it also holds a top position in R&D and in process technologies. The company provides technical service and support to customers worldwide.

Polyurethane dispersions can be used in a wide variety of applications. For example, products in the Bayhydrol UH, U and UV series and Bayhytherm are a component of base coats for automotive OEM and refinishing coatings, as well as a component of wood and furniture coatings and long-wearing floor coatings. Adhesives formulated with Dispercoll U are used in the production of furniture and shoes as well as in the automotive industry.

Under the name Impranil the low-solvent raw materials also play an important role in the production of coated textiles and polyurethane synthetics. PUDs in the Baybond product line are used in the form of glass fibre sizings to produce robust plastic composites (glass fibre-reinforced plastics). The film formers adhere very well to the fibres, but, in composites with thermoplastics, they are still elastic enough to ensure the necessary stability.


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