German packaging firm Sanner expands in Asia

(plasticsnews) -- Sanner GmbH, a Germany company that specializes in desiccants, closures and other plastic packaging products, has expanded its plant in Kunshan, China, and opened a sales office in Indonesia.

The Bensheim-based company opened the Kunshan plant in 2000. The facility now employs nearly 100, making tubes and desiccant closures and custom packaging. The expanded production area, which opened in September, is designed as a clean room facility, the firm said in a news release.

Sanner said the project cost several million euros.

CEO Holger Frank said the operations are in line with increasing pharmaceutical packaging standards in Asia.

The company also has production operations in Germany and Hungary.

The sales office in Jakarta, Indonesia, opened in October. The office will primarily serve customers in Southeast Asia. The company's sales office in Shanghai will continue to serve other Asian regions.

Sanner said it has more than 400 employees in Germany, China, Hungary, and the United States, and it generated 2010 sales of more than EUR40 million (USD53 million).


Teijin building Japanese composites plant

(europeanplasticsnews) -- Teijin plans to establish a plant that will have the capability to mass-produce carbon fibre-reinforced thermoplastic components.
The company said in a news release that the plant will be the first of its kind in the world, fully integrated from production of carbon fibre on-site, all the way to finished parts.

The integrated process will reduce cycle times for moulding parts to less than a minute. That will allow faster production of prototypes and performance evaluation tests.

The 2 billion yen (┬19m) pilot plant will be located at Teijin's Matsuyama factory in Ehime Prefecture, Japan.

Construction will begin shortly, with operations scheduled to start in mid 2012. Teijin said its mass production technique has the potential to help automakers use more lightweight carbon fibre parts.


Evonik's WPC evolution focuses on acrylic

(europeanplasticsnews) -- The polymer used in wood plastics composites (WPC) is usually PP or PVC. But Evonik Industries has worked with Reifenhauser to develop a PMMA-based Plexiglas Wood brand.

The new material is compounded and extruded into 50-75% reinforced WPC profiles on a Reifenhauser direct extrusion line.

Carlo Schutz, manager innovative projects at Evonik, says the idea of PMMA-based WPC arose from using acrylic products as protective coatings on conventional wood product surfaces.
Evonik went on to develop colourless and coloured modified PMMA containing binder and adhesion additives. These ensure optimal coupling between the PMMA and cellulose components of the reinforcing wood fibres.

Additional expensive stabilisers are not required, as shown in 10,000 hours of artificial weathering on PPMA- and PP-based WPC profiles, says the company.

Schutz has presented a table showing that natural and coloured Plexiglas Wood has a flexural modulus of 8,800MPa and 10,000MPa. Although below some tropical woods, these values are close to or slightly higher than beech, spruce and red cedar.
Flexural modulus was found to be much higher than for PVC-WPC (6,500MPa) and two different PP-WPC formulations (3,200 and 4,500MPa).


BASF increases its presence in growing African markets

( -- BASF is increasing its presence in the growing African markets. Today, December 7, 2011, the company will open a new office in Nairobi, Kenya, to serve customers in East Africa and Sub-Sahara.

⌠Africa is a huge continent with a wealth of raw materials and a growing population. At the same time, the dynamically growing economy has enormous potential for BASF. Through establishing a stronger local presence we will be able to even further support our customers and to enhance BASF's market position, said Jacques Delmoitiez, President, responsible for BASF's business in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

The company's target is to more than double sales in Africa by 2020. Its sales, excluding oil and gas, were around EUR1 billion in 2010.

The sale of innovative construction chemicals for the booming construction industry in the urban areas of East Africa is one of the main focuses of activity, as is the distribution of crop protection products that increase crop yields. At the same time, BASF is expanding its business in the consumer sector with products such as ingredients for personal care products and laundry detergents as well as pharmaceutical ingredients.

BASF is also developing solutions to the pressing challenges that affect large parts of Africa. For the private housing sector, BASF supplies insulating materials such as Neopor╝. Another key project is the fight against vitamin A deficiency. Too little vitamin A can cause blindness and makes people more prone to infections. Staple foods, such as cooking oil and flour, are therefore fortified with vitamin A with the help of BASF.


Clariant announced next stage in capacity expansion program for Exoli OP

(Clariant) -- Clariant announces the next stage in its on-going capacity expansion program for Exoli OP non-halogenated flame retardants, with the addition of a third production unit at its site in Hurth-Knapsack, near Cologne, Germany. Integration of a third production facility, which is set to come on-stream in 2013, will result in an overall tripling of capacity since growth plans were first communicated during K 2010.

Clariant created extra capacity in mid-2011 through a Phase One debottlenecking at its existing full-scale commercial plant at Hurth-Knapsack. The plant has been producing Exolit OP since 2004. The on-target completion of a second industrial-scale unit at the site (Phase Two) by mid-2012 will double effective capacity. The start of the new third production facility in 2013 will then triple the baseline capacity of the original plant.

The capacity expansion program reflects the steadily growing demand of the electrical and electronics (E&E) industry for safer and more environmentally-compatible flame retardants. The Exolit OP phosphinate-based flame retardant product line has become a well-established halogen-free alternative to brominated flame retardants for engineering thermoplastics and other polymers in electric and electronic equipment.

Clariant is currently evaluating options in Asia to further increase the capacities of Exolit OP, with the target to be on-stream during 2014/2015.