BASF introduces transparent, water-based PU topcoat for decorative flooring solutions

MOSCOW (MRC) -- With MasterTop TC 417W Clear, BASF has introduced a transparent, water-based polyurethane topcoat for decorative flooring solutions with enhanced hygienic and optical properties, reported GV.

This complements the company's product portfolio of chemical solutions for construction, which is bundled under the Master Builders Solutions brand.

According to the manufacturer, the main advantages of the new product are antibacterial activity in accordance with ISO 22196:2011 and lower dirt pick-up, which reduces cleaning requirements and saves costs. Furthermore, the smooth matt finish without foaming or roller marks makes installation easier and improves the visual appeal of the floors.

Moreover, MasterTop TC 417W Clear contributes to good indoor air quality and complies with the low emission limits of the AgBB standard (Committee for Health-related Evaluation of Building Products), says the company. The topcoat is also available as an anti-slip version which makes the floor safer. In combination with decorative flooring systems from BASF, MasterTop TC 417W Clear is especially well-suited for application in buildings with high decorative and hygiene requirements such as hospitals, schools, cafeterias, offices or exhibition centers.

For the optimal maintenance of MasterTop flooring solutions, BASF has developed MasterTop CLN 50 - a highly concentrated cleaner and degreasing agent. The product is biodegradable without residue and supports a long service life of the flooring solution. It is approved for use in the food industry. MasterTop CLN 50 is anti-static, removes organic and inorganic contaminations and reduces the growth of bacteria; as a result, MasterTop floors remain as clean and safe as they were immediately after installation.

"With the launch of the new products we support our customers with steadily improved flooring solutions and we will further strengthen our product portfolio in the area of decorative flooring systems. These products will be produced and supplied directly from Oldenburg, the European headquarter for Flooring Solutions from BASF," said Luc Van Eldere, Head of Performance Flooring Europe at BASF.

Under the MasterTop brand, BASF offers a broad portfolio of liquid-applied resin flooring solutions for a wide range of applications in for example public buildings, healthcare facilities, hotels and factory buildings. As the requirements faced by each individual floor are different, MasterTop products can be tailored individually to meet specific performance criteria, technical and aesthetic requirements, as well as allowing fast, cost-effective application, says BASF. The non-solvented MasterTop systems feature low emissions, high strength and low maintenance costs combined with high durability. MasterTop wall coverings enable a seamless transition between floors and walls, thus ensuring the highest possible levels of hygiene and holistic interior design.

The Master Builders Solutions experts from BASF attach particular importance to research and development work for new, durable, low-emission flooring and wall solutions for indoor use. The Master Builders Solutions Training Center at BASF’s facilities in Oldenburg allows the use and the benefits of the innovative products to be demonstrated to customers at one central location in Europe.

As MRC informed previously, the new Master Builders Solutions Training Center at BASF's site in Oldenburg, Germany, was officially opened in April 2015. The new training center in Oldenburg had been created to train and inform customers and BASF's Master Builders Solutions experts on the professional application and handling of Performance Flooring and Waterproofing products and systems - thus fostering their professionalism, knowledge and experience.

BASF is the largest diversified chemical company in the world and is headquartered in Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF produces a wide range of chemicals, for example solvents, amines, resins, glues, electronic-grade chemicals, industrial gases, basic petrochemicals and inorganic chemicals. The most important customers for this segment are the pharmaceutical, construction, textile and automotive industries. BASF had sales of over EUR70 billion in 2015.

Indonesian plastic industry expansion eyed in 2016 despite new taxes

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Sales in Indonesia's plastic industry are expected to rise 6.5% to 4.3 million tons (roughly USD8 billion) in 2016 supported by rising plastic and plastic products demand in those industries that use these materials (for example, Indonesia's food & beverage industry and the automotive industry), as per GV.

Fajar Budiono, Secretary General of the Aromatic, Olefin and Plastic Industry Association (Inaplas), said the year 2016 should be a good one for the plastic industry as the economy of Indonesia has started to stabilize after a prolonged slowdown.

However, in the first quarter of 2016, sales of plastic materials in Indonesia actually fell 1 percent due to the government's decision to implement an IDR 200 charge on each plastic bag sold by retailers such as supermarkets and vendors. This charge is part of a six-month trial and aims at curbing consumption of plastic bags, while at the same time generating more government revenue (the move to add a charge on each plastic bag has reportedly managed to reduce plastic bag consumption in Indonesian supermarkets by 25%).

Despite the weaker performance in Q1-2016, turnover in Indonesia's plastic industry is expected to rise 2% (y/y) to 2 million tons (USD 2.2 billion) in the second quarter of the year supported by rising consumption due to the fasting month of Ramadan and Idul Fitri (Muslims’ biggest religious festival) festivities. During these Islamic celebrations Indonesians increase consumption of food and beverage products as well as products such as clothes, shoes and bags.

Inaplas also stated that it hopes more Indonesian investors in the plastic industry to import new plastic manufacturing equipment from Taiwan. Most machinery that is used to produce plastic in Indonesia is imported from Taiwan due to the relatively affordable price and relatively high quality of the machinery. New developments in Taiwan have given birth to better equipment (higher quality, more efficient, and more environment-friendly). Therefore Inaplas recommends Indonesia's plastic and rubber manufacturing community to attend the Taipei International Plastic and Rubber Industry Show (PLAS) in Taiwan between 12-16 August 2016.

We remind that, as MRC reported earlier, Barito Pacific's subsidiary Chandra Asri Petrochemical (CAP) is reportedly planning to build a naphtha refinery at its Cilegon complex in Banten, Indonesia, with an estimated investment of USD740m. The company is now undertaking a one year preliminary study for the proposed project, which would reduce its reliance on naptha imports.

Three Huntsman Terol polyols receive UL environment designations

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Huntsman Corporation has announced that three of its Terol performance polyols from its Polyurethanes Division have received Underwriters Laboratories (UL) Environment certification, reported GV.

Terol 250 and 649 polyols received inaugural certifications, and Terol 563 polyol was re-certified to reflect increased recycled content. Huntsman Polyurethanes says it became the first US aromatic polyester polyol manufacturer to receive the designation in 2014.

"Huntsman is committed to providing high-quality, sustainable materials that allow our customers to design their insulation products with confidence," said Les Yamato, Business Manager, Terol Polyols, Huntsman Polyurethanes. "Receiving UL Environment recognition for Terol 250 and 649 polyols is an important step, as we now offer certified systems house polyols in addition to our primary product used in polyiso boardstock applications."

Terol 250 polyol contains an average of 64% recycled content, consisting of 36 % post-consumer and 27 % pre-consumer recycled material. It is recommended for use in all polyurethane and polyisocyanurate systems, as well as spray foam and pour-in-place applications. According to the manufacturer, the high aromatic content and lower viscosity of Terol 250 polyol allows for the use of lower flame retardant levels with good viscosity and fire performance results in finished B-sides, in small scale testing.

Terol 649 polyol is Huntsman’s newest product for systems house applications. It contains an average of 16 % bio-based material and 24 % pre-consumer recycled material, and is targeted for use in next-generation blowing agent systems, but can also be used with hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), such as 245fa or 365mfc/227. The high functionality of Terol 649 polyol allows for higher loading levels of the polyester, up to 100 % of the polyol requirement. This can improve the performance of spray applied polyurethane foams in an array of testing protocols, particularly small scale fire testing, and can allow reductions in the amount of flame retardants required in the B-side of the formulation.

Terol 563 polyol has been re-certified, increasing from 27 to 32 % recycled content, and is primarily used in polyisocyanurate boardstock insulation applications. When properly formulated and processed, insulation panels produced with Terol 563 polyol can pass the Factory Mutual 4450 Calorimeter and ASTM E-84 Tunnel tests, says Huntsman.

UL verified Huntsman’s pre-consumer recycled, post-consumer recycled and renewable resource content claims by reviewing the company’s manufacturing practices and raw materials sources. Huntsman says it is working to secure certification for additional polyols, which allows customers to design their insulation products with confidence and meet preferred purchasing protocols. The company says it offers one of the broadest ranges of aromatic polyester polyols for rigid foam applications, with hydroxyl values ranging from 120 to 350. Additionally, its customized polyol solutions can meet the most demanding insulation applications, says Huntsman.

As MRC wrote before, in October 2014, Huntsman Corporation completed the acquisition of the Performance Additives and Titanium Dioxide (TiO2) businesses of Rockwood Holdings, Inc. And in February 2015, the company announced that it planned to reduce its European TiO2 capacity by approximately 100,000 tons, representing 13% of Huntsman's European TiO2 capacity.

Huntsman Corporation is a publicly traded global manufacturer and marketer of differentiated chemicals. The company's operating companies manufacture products for a variety of global industries, including chemicals, plastics, automotive, aviation, textiles, footwear, paints and coatings, construction, technology, agriculture, health care, detergent, personal care, furniture, appliances and packaging.

Bayer and Honeywell unveiled spray foam insulation key to more energy-efficient buildings in Saudi Arabia

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Honeywell and Bayer Pearl have unveiled new spray foam insulation technology solutions that can improve energy efficiency in residential and commercial buildings in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, as per GV.

With 1.5 million new homes needed to keep up with local population growth, energy demand in the country is anticipated to double by 2030. In anticipation of this surge in demand, the Kingdom has introduced new thermal insulation requirements for all new buildings, which are designed to support energy conservation. This increased focus on efficiency supports the economic and sustainability goals contained within the Saudi Vision 2030, the Kingdom’s 15-year plan aimed at building a prosperous and sustainable economic future.

Honeywell and Bayer Pearl brought together regulators, global industry experts, and regional stakeholders and contractors at a workshop in Riyadh to review how next generation polyurethane (PU) foam can meet the Kingdom’s thermal insulation requirements. At the workshop entitled "Sustainable Solutions for PU Foam," technology advancements such as spray foam systems with new blowing agent technology were discussed. Blowing agents allow closed-cell foam to expand and provide excellent insulating properties. A 2013 study by engineers at King Faisal University estimated that by applying both wall and roof insulation, energy usage can be reduced by up to 20%.

As MRC reported earlier, in September 2015, Bayer AG moved a step closer to floating its EUR11 billion (USD12.3 billion) specialty chemicals business by "legally and economically" separating the unit, now named Covestro AG. The German pharmaceuticals group plans to float Covestro, previously called Material Science, by the middle of 2016l. Bayer plans either an initial public offering or direct spinoff to shareholders. The company had previously indicated that it preferred an IPO, which would generate cash for heavily indebted Bayer.

Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, agriculture and high-tech polymer materials. As an innovation company, it sets trends in research-intensive areas. Bayer's products and services are designed to benefit people and improve their quality of life. At the same time, the Group aims to create value through innovation, growth and high earning power. Bayer is committed to the principles of sustainable development and to its social and ethical responsibilities as a corporate citizen.

BASF helps make sporting goods more sustainable

MOSCOW (MRC) -- BASF helps make sporting goods more sustainable, new high-performance materials to enable infinite recycling of sports shoes and ultimately single-step production, said the producer on its site.

BASF is one of ten members of industry and science working together on the project "Sport Infinity". Spearheaded by adidas and funded by the European Commission, the three-year project aims at identifying and developing recyclable, partly waste-based, textile fiber reinforced composites. These materials enable the fast production of easily customizable sporting goods.

The research program focuses on football sporting goods, in particular shoes. In a design-driven approach, the automation potential of various molding processes will be exploited, potentially enabling the production of a shoe in one step. The goal is a new breed of sporting goods that will not be discarded, but reused. A used football shoe, for instance, could be collected and shredded into tiny pieces, of which every gram is reprocessed. Combined with virgin material and reinforced with selected fiber from similar or alternative waste sources, a new shoe can be manufactured.

The challenge lies in achieving the desired product performance level in a repeated material recycling loop. BASF’s extensive polymer know-how will play an integral part in developing new materials and tailoring them to the manufacturing process. Recyclability is a determining parameter in the material selection process.

"We are delighted to join nine highly ranked partners in this project" says Juergen Weiser, Director Technology, Performance Materials, BASF. "We are focusing on special new polymers with a broad mechanical property range. The goal is to create a recyclable product that can be fine-tuned to a variety of applications and related processes. Developing new and disruptive cradle-to-cradle sporting good concepts together with partners along the entire value chain is a perfect fit for us."

Polymers, either from industrial or sportswear waste sources, will be reengineered to the key manufacturing processes for Sport Infinity. These processes utilize almost every gram of material and do not produce waste. Moreover, they enable consumers to customize their football shoes in shape, color, and design. Consumers can thus become creators without having to worry about waste. Ultimately, the goal is to optimize the process to a degree that enables the highly automated production of shoes in a single process step.

In order to turn this vision into reality, Sport Infinity brings together partners from various disciplines. From specialty equipment manufacturers to processing experts, from major chemical suppliers to fiber and textile processors, from industrial design to knowledge management, as well as the sportswear brand and a football academy partner. Consequently, the project consortium covers the entire value chain to achieve one common goal: sustainable, customizable high performance football sporting goods made in Europe.

As MRC informed previously, in April 2016, BASF opened a world-scale bioacrylamide (BioACM) production facility at its Bradford, UK site. The new production plant at Bradford adds to BASF’s bioacrylamide capacity worldwide, however BASF has not disclosed new or existing capacity figures. BASF operates a polyacrylamides production hub at Bradford. Polyacrylamides are used as water-soluble flocculation aids in industrial and municipal wastewater treatment, enhanced oil recovery, mineral processing, and paper making.

BASF is the largest diversified chemical company in the world and is headquartered in Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF produces a wide range of chemicals, for example solvents, amines, resins, glues, electronic-grade chemicals, industrial gases, basic petrochemicals and inorganic chemicals. The most important customers for this segment are the pharmaceutical, construction, textile and automotive industries. BASF generated sales of more than EUR70 billion in 2015.