Petkim to float PX tenders in January

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Turkish petrochemicals major Petkim (part of SOCAR) is expected to float paraxylene (PX) tenders in January after a gap of six months, reported Apic-online with reference to a source close to the company.

The company usually sells its PX through tenders that offer the product in lots of 5,000 mt.

The company's aromatics plant in Aliaga can produce 119,000 mt/year of PX and 134,000 mt/year of benzene. The company shut the plant for a turnaround at the end of July and restarted it end-November.

Petkim is also currently in contract negotiations with PX buyers for 2015, the source said.

As MRC wrote before, in late July. Turkish petrochemicals major Petkim Petrokimya Holdings staged an official opening for a new plastic packaging factory at its petrochemical complex in the western Turkish town of Aliaga.

Petkim is the leading petrochemical company of Turkey. Specializing in petrochemical manufacturing, the company produces ethylene, polyethylene, polyvinyl chloride, polypropylene and other chemical building blocks for use in the manufacture of plastics, textiles, and other consumer and industrial products.

Inorganic pigments from Lanxess for colored concrete safety barriers

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Lanxess, the specialty chemicals company, has introduced new liquid colors used for coloring the cast-in-situ concrete, which are based on the weather-stable inorganic pigments, reported the company on its site.

Thus, for the first time, colored concrete safety barriers are ensuring safety on German roads - and enhancing their visual appeal, too. Instead of drab gray, three sections in green, ocher, red and yellow blend perfectly into the Baden-Wuerttemberg landscape.

The K 1060 in the Boblingen region of Germany connects the town of Renningen and its industrial areas to the general road network. Part of the regional road redevelopment agreed in November 2014 required providing protective measures at various points. Tenders were invited for cast-in-situ concrete walls with the option of coloring these.

The three sections of the pilot project have a total length of around half a kilometer. The area that has been integrated into a landscaped embankment to support a cycle path is colored with green Colortherm chromium oxide pigments. Orange Bayferrox iron oxide pigments were used for the opposite side of the road, with the color matched to the stone wall behind and creating a contrast to the abutment of a bridge.

A total of 180 cubic meters of concrete were used for the pilot project. A truck mixer load of approximately eight cubic meters was sufficient for 20 to 25 meters of concrete safety barrier.

Colored exposed concrete sections made of cast-in-situ concrete create a visual impact and can separate different areas such as bus lanes, crossings and cycle paths clearly and durably, thus boosting safety. The design possibilities are virtually limitless - the environmentally safe Bayferrox and Colortherm inorganic color pigments from Lanxess are available in red, yellow, green, brown and black. A total of more than 100 different shades are available for a wide range of application areas. The pigments are cement- and alkali-resistant and completely weather- and light-stable.

As MRC informed previously, in April 2014, Lanxess successfully concluded the pilot phase for a highly efficient production process for butyl rubber. In the past seven years, Lanxess worked on a fundamentally new technology for a more sustainable production. An important step in this process was the testing of the new technology in two pilot plants at its production site in Zwijndrecht/Belgium since spring 2012. The production process of butyl rubber is highly complex and requires process steps at very low temperatures and significant usage of steam. The new process technology is significantly more energy and cost efficient.

Lanxess is a leading specialty chemicals company with sales of EUR 8.3 billion in 2013 and roughly 17,300 employees in 31 countries. The company is currently represented at 52 production sites worldwide. The core business of Lanxess is the development, manufacturing and marketing of plastics, rubber, intermediates and specialty chemicals.

SBI receives mandate to raise Rs 4,000 crore for BPCL petrochemical plan

MOSCOW (MRC) -- State-run Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) is planning to raise Rs 4,000 crore for the expansion of its Kochi refinery and to fund its petrochemicals venture, said three banking sources aware of the development. State Bank of India (SBI) has received the mandate to raise funds, said Business-standard.

BPCL is planning to diversify into downstream petrochemicals with an investment of Rs 4,588 crore by using propylene. The public sector refiner is planning to produce niche petrochemicals such as acrylic acid, acrylates and oxo alcohols, which are predominantly being imported into the country, at its Kochi refinery facility, using the polymer grade propylene that will be available after the ongoing integrated refinery expansion project (IREP) is completed.

"The board of directors of BPCL has given their approval for diversification into petrochemicals at an estimated capital cost of Rs 4,588 crore," BPCL had said this month. "We will be financing the project through both internal accruals and external financing," said a senior BPCL official. The company will invest around Rs 14,225 crore in its expansion at the Kochi refinery and Rs 5,000 crore for setting up a petrochemical joint venture.

The total investment in both the projects is about Rs 20,000 crore. BPCL is in the process of increasing the refining capacity of Kochi refinery from 9.5 million tonne per annum (mtpa) to 15.5 mtpa under IREP project and improve the auto-fuel quality to Euro-IV/V levels to meet the growing demand of petroleum products in Indian market.This would also upgrade the refinery residue stream to value added distillates, which BPCLis planning to use for diversification into value-added petrochemical products.

BPCL’s planned petrochemical products will have major applications in industries such as paints and coatings, adhesives, plasticisers, solvents, water treatment, etc. The petrochemical unit is expected to come on stream during the financial year 2018-19. The project proposal will now be submitted for obtaining environmental clearance, said BPCL.

The Kochi refinery is presently producing petrochemical feed stocks such as benzene, toluene and propylene in addition to the various petroleum products and specialty products. Increased quantities of naphtha will be produced in the refinery after the proposed capacity expansion.

BPCL will integrate the refinery with a petrochemicals complex to utilise naphtha and other feedstocks from the refinery.

Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) is an Indian state-controlled oil and gas company headquartered in Mumbai, India. Bharat Petroleum owns refineries at Mumbai, Maharashtra and Kochi, Kerala (Kochi Refineries) with a capacity of 12 and 9.5 million metric tonnes per year.

Taiwan Prosperity Chemical Corp shut down BPA plant in Taiwan for maintenance

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Taiwan prosperity Chemical Corp (TPCC) has shut a bisphenol A(BPA) plant for maintenance turnaround, as per Apic-online.

A Polymerupdate source in Taiwan informed that the plant was shut on December 22. It is likely to remain off-stream for around one month.

Located in Linyuan, Taiwan, the plant has a production capacity of 100,000 mt/year.

As MRC wrote before, South Korean petrochemical company LG Chem restarted its BPA plant in South Korea for maintenance turnaround in late November2014. It was shut on October 26, 2014. Located in Yeosu, South Korea, the plant has a production capacity of 150,000 mt/year.

BPA is a type of engineering plastic for use in automobiles, mobile phones, and electronics appliances.

DSM showcases latest automotive and mobile phone applications for its engineering plastics

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Royal DSM, the global Life Sciences and Material Sciences company, will feature numerous new applications in automotive, mobile electronics and electrical equipment that incorporate its engineering plastics for high performance, low weight, and improved sustainability at PlastIndia 2015 (5-10 February, Gandhinagar, Gujarat), as per the company's press release.

For the automotive sector, a major highlight is a new generation of Diablo high temperature resistant grades in DSM’s Stanyl polyamide 46 and Akulon polyamide 6 portfolios. The new Diablo grades are aimed at such engine compartment applications as air intake manifolds with integrated ducts and charge air coolers (CACs). The latest version of Stanyl Diablo polyamide 46 is able to withstand a continuous use temperature of 230C, while the new Akulon Diablo withstands a 220C continuous-use temperature. Equally important, both new grades have improved resistance to short-term high temperature peaks.

Other innovative automotive applications on display include a composite fuel tank for two- and four-wheeled vehicles running on methane or hydrogen, and an award-winning crankshaft cover. The fuel tank is a pressure vessel made by wrapping a high-barrier liner blow molded in DSM’s Akulon Fuel Lock polyamide 6 inside a continuous fiber reinforced plastic shell. It is around one third the weight of a steel tank, and so enables a substantial improvement in fuel-efficiency. It is even possible to use thermoplastics such as DSM’s high performance EcoPaXX polyamide 410 -which is derived from renewable resources-in the shell, rather than a traditional thermosetting resin.

EcoPaXX has just won an award in another automotive application, a lightweight multi-functional crankshaft cover. The part came top in the Powertrain category in the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE) Automotive Division Innovation Awards Competition. The EcoPaXX crankshaft cover is produced by DSM’s automotive component specialist partner KACO in Germany for the latest generation of diesel engines developed by the Volkswagen Group. It weighs around 40% less than a crankshaft cover with similar geometry made in aluminum.

DSM is also emphasizing its extensive offering for Electrical and Electronics (E&E) applications, especially in mobile communications. For example, the company has new solutions that answer growing requirements for size reduction and thinwalling, for halogen-free flame retardance, and for heat management. On the DSM stand, visitors will be able to talk with experts about the latest options for such components as connectors, bezels and frames, enclosures, wire and cable, antennas and splitters.

Elsewhere in E&E, DSM has taken a leading position in the development of halogen-free flame retardant high performance polyamides that provide a more efficient, cost-effective and environment-friendly alternative to glass-reinforced thermoset composites in molded case circuit breakers (MCCBs). DSM also has various innovative solutions for LED lighting, including thermally conductive compounds which can be used to produce heat sinks that are easier to make, lighter and more functional than aluminum versions: leading lighting producer Osram recently started using DSM’s Stanyl TC compound based on polyamide 46 for heat sinks in a new series of LED down lights, for example. DSM has halogen-free materials for wire and cable too, including its Arnitel thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) for electrical and communications cables.

Arnitel is also at the heart of new breakthrough technology developed by DSM for the medical sector. Arnitel VT provides very high levels of protection against contagious viruses coupled with breathability for wearer comfort when used as a single-layer membrane laminated to fabric in disposable medical gowns and drapes.

At PlastIndia 2015, DSM will also highlight the "green" manufacturing practices it applies to its own production operations. This September, the company inaugurated a Solar Technologies Demonstration Center at its facility in Pune, India, where it produces polyester and polyamide compounds. This state-of-the-art center will showcase the performance of DSM's innovations in solar technology, and will also reduce the plant's CO2 footprint by using solar energy to meet 25% of the site's electricity needs.

As MRC reported earlier, this week Royal DSM announced it had reached agreement with Cathay Investments for the sale of Euroresins. Subject to customary approvals and notifications, the transaction is expected to close in Q1 2015. Financial details will not be disclosed at this time.

Royal DSM is a global science-based company active in health, nutrition and materials. DSM delivers innovative solutions that nourish, protect and improve performance in global markets such as food and dietary supplements, personal care, feed, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, automotive, paints, electrical and electronics, life protection, alternative energy and bio-based materials.