Petrologistics to start propylene plant in Texas

(Plastemart) -- Petrologistics - US propylene producer, is to begin feeding its new 500,000 tpa propane dehydrogenation unit in Houston, Texas as per Platts. Start up was originally planned for late August/early September, but was deferred due to mechanical setbacks. Initial production is expected to be 70% CGP and 30% PGP.

Propylene contracts in the US could be under further downward pressure given the additional supply. US contracts were set to fall 1.5 cents in October as many participants in the negotiation process were heard to have agreed to the decrease.


China's Shenhua Ningxia achieves on-spec propylene at MTP unit

SHANGHAI (ICIS) -- China's major coal producer, Shenhua Ningxia Coal Industry Group Co, has achieved on-spec propylene at its methanol-to-propylene (MTP) plant in northwestern Ningxia province, a company source said on Monday.

The company started trial runs at the unit - with a name plate capacity of 470,000 tonnes/year - on 6 September and achieved on-spec product on 4 October, the source added.

"Actually, the MTP unit has a production capacity of 490,000 tonnes/year of propylene and other by-products like gasoline and ethylene in small volumes, the source said.

In addition to the MTP unit, the complex will also produce 1.67m tonnes/year of methanol and 500,000 tonnes/year of polypropylene (PP) once it is fully operational.

Shenhua Ningxia Coal Industry Group Co is a joint venture between the Ningxia provincial government and China's largest coal producer Shenhua Group Corp, with 49% and 51% stake-holding, respectively.


Formosa Petrochem idles No. 2 naphtha cracker for planned maintenance

(ICIS) -- Formosa Petrochemical Corp No. 2 naphtha cracker will shut today for a 40-day planned maintenance. Meanwhile one of the Taiwanese majors' other three crude distillation units, shut in late July following an outage, will restart around mid-October.

Formosa was impacted by two separate fires in July- one at its 700,000 tpa No. 1 cracker in early July, and another at its 540,000 bpd refinery late that month. Due to the outage at its No.1 unit, Formosa had delayed the maintenance at its No. 2 cracker to early October from Aug. 20. Two CDUs were brought back online on July 29 and Aug. 3, and are running at around 90% capacity.


Solvay to expand compounding capacity for specialty polymers in China

(Plastemart) -- Solvay invests ┬21 mln in a new capacity to satisfy surging demand in China, in a specialty polymers compounding plant at its site in Changshu in the province of Jiangsu, China. The compounding plant will serve the fast growing markets in China for electronics, automotive, consumer and industrial applications and will initially start producing compounds of Amodel polyphthalamide (PPA), Ixef polyarylamide (PARA) and Kalix (modified PARA).

The facility will be fully adaptable for future expansion for both overall capacity and for other high performance and fluorinated polymers.

"This investment clearly illustrates Solvay's strategy to enlarge its industrial base in fast moving markets such as China. Sales of Specialty Polymers in Asia were above 25% of total sales in the first half of this year and we see a growing trend," says Augusto di Donfrancesco, General Manager of the Strategic Business Unit Specialty Polymers.


New random copolymer PP by SABIC

(Plastemart) -- Two new random copolymer PP grades for cast film and biaxially oriented polypropylene (BOPP) film applications have been added to its portfolio by SABIC.

The new grades - SABIC PP 622L and SABIC PP 621P, are engineered to meet growing customer demand for advanced film technologies such as multi-layer constructions, and for improved aesthetics and versatility.

They provide significant advantages over homopolymers in a wide range of packaging applications, enabling converters to produce film with high clarity and exceptional sealing and puncture resistance performance. Applications include food packaging, lamination film, hygiene packaging, stationary film, and flower/textile packaging.

"The introduction of these random PP resins is a key part of our strategy to further expand SABIC's position in the film conversion industry", says Paul Wanrooij, Technical Marketing Engineer, SABIC.