Italy makes major oil find in Angola

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Italian company Eni said it had made a major oil discovery in Angola that would boost its credentials as one of the most successful foreign oil producers in Africa in recent years, as per Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The find is Angola's largest offshore discovery in years and may help Africa's second-biggest crude producer avoid a steep decline in output due to the ageing of its other fields.

Oil accounts for 95 percent of exports and around 70 percent of revenues, and the government has recently offered better fiscal terms and more collaboration to international energy firms in an effort to help its mostly impoverished population.

Eni said its new Agogo prospect in Angola's deep waters contained between 450 million and 650 million barrels of light oil with potential for further upside.

Data from the exploration well pointed to a production capacity of more than 20,000 barrels of oil per day, it said.

"This is a valuable find of light, sweet oil which they will be able to fast-track to meet increasing demand in 2020-2021," Santander oil analyst Jason Kenney said.

Eni, which has been in Angola since 1980, will be operator at the field with a stake of 36.8 percent, the same as Angola's state-owned Sonangol. SSI Fifteen Ltd has 26.3 percent.

Angola, a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, is a key location for the Italian state-controlled major. The company currently produces around 155,000 barrels of equity oil equivalent per day in the African nation.

Eni, which in 2018 produced 1.85 million barrels per day, was struggling to replace reserves a decade ago and lost credibility over its management of the huge Kashagan oilfield in Kazakhstan.

But giant gas finds at Mamba in Mozambique and Zohr in Egypt have since given it the strongest discovery record in the industry.

The major, which produces more than half its oil and gas in Africa, has made a move to diversify away from the continent by clinching a series of deals in the Gulf region.

It is set to uncover its new strategy plan to 2022 on Friday.

As MRC reported before, in February 2018, Italy’s Eni and France’s Total discovered a promising natural gas field off Cyprus, Eni said on Thursday, saying the find looked geologically similar to the mammoth Zohr field off Egypt.

Lubrizol acquires Laboratoire Phenobio

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The Lubrizol Corporation announces the acquisition of Laboratoire Phenobio, an innovative supplier of naturally-derived extracts and botanical active ingredients, said the company.

Recognized across the world as a pioneer in botanical extracts and natural performance ingredients, this addition expands Lubrizol's existing capabilities to provide clean natural ingredients across the cosmetic, nutraceutical and life sciences industries.

Located near the Bordeaux region in France, the company's unique capabilities in subcritical water extraction (SWE) of botanical biomass, coupled with their energy-economic and eco-responsible technologies provide significant value to Lubrizol's global sustainability efforts. This expertise includes a technology used to extract phytoactives from botanical raw materials and is also commonly known as pressurized low polarity water (PLPW). The technology involves extraction of a broad range of phytoactives that are not normally obtained with only water.

"Lubrizol continues to invest in innovative technologies to offer step change formulations for the personal care and life sciences markets" states Deb Langer, Lubrizol vice president and general manager of personal, home and healthcare. "With this acquisition, Lubrizol customers will have access to novel botanical extracts compliant with ECOCERT® and COSMOS standards that meet the naturality and sustainability expectations end users are requiring on a global basis. Additionally, our preferred partners will have access to final formulations using this exciting new technology."

The Lubrizol Corporation, a Berkshire Hathaway company, is a market-driven global company that combines complex, specialty chemicals to optimize the quality, performance and value of customers' products while reducing their environmental impact. It is a leader at combining market insights with chemistry and application capabilities to deliver valuable solutions to customers in the global transportation, industrial and consumer markets. Lubrizol improves lives by acting as an essential partner in our customers' success, delivering efficiency, reliability or wellness to their end users. Technologies include lubricant additives for engine oils, driveline and other transportation-related fluids, industrial lubricants, as well as additives for gasoline and diesel fuel. In addition, Lubrizol makes ingredients and additives for home care, personal care and skin care products and specialty materials encompassing polymer and coatings technologies, along with polymer-based pharmaceutical and medical device solutions.

SABIC launches advanced breakaway support filament aimed to improve productivity for part manufacturers

MOSCOW (MRC) -- SABIC, a global leader in the chemical industry, today announced the launch of AMS31F filament, the company’s breakaway support material for fused deposition modeling, said the company.

The new filament maintains rigidity during printing and provides exceptional pliability during post processing to enable easier removal of scaffolding at room temperature, which can help reduce the time required to produce finished parts. The new AMS31F filament is for use with SABIC’s ULTEM™ AM9085F filament, a high-performance polyetherimide (PEI) material that provides high heat resistance and mechanical strength which are optimal properties for potential aerospace applications, as well as for automotive, oil and gas and tooling applications.

“Using structural supports to print parts with complex geometries is essential, but it can also be quite challenging,” said Keith Cox, senior business manager, Additive Manufacturing, SABIC. “Removing traditional supports from the finished part often involves time-consuming processes that can negatively impact productivity and quality. By offering a complementary support material for our ULTEM™ AM9085F filament, SABIC is providing a complete material solution that helps customers save time and effort. Additionally, the ease of support material removal provides part designers greater flexibility in defining print orientation to optimize part performance.”

SABIC’s new AMS31F filament helps part producers increase their productivity by helping to reduce the time required to remove structural supports. SABIC’s patent pending material formulation was developed for use with ULTEM™ AM9085F filament to balance excellent adhesion during printing with the ability to easily remove the scaffolding during post processing. Unlike competitive support materials that often require reheating to facilitate removal, SABIC’s AMS31F filament easily separates at room temperature, reducing post-production time. The filament’s white color provides a sharp contrast to the amber color of ULTEM™ filament, which allows operators to more quickly identify the structures to be removed.

“SABIC is providing service bureaus with a complete material solution that effectively combines the high performance of ULTEM™ filament with their efficient AMS31F support filament,” said Tracy Albers, president of Rapid Prototype + Manufacturing LLC (RP+M), an additive manufacturing company in Avon Lake, Ohio. “The ease of support material removal simplifies our secondary operations process and provides a higher quality part for our customers.”
“The adhesion between the ULTEM™ AM9085F filament and SABIC’s new AMS31F support filament is excellent at high temperatures and detaches easily at room temperature, eliminating the need to reheat parts,” said Davide Ardizzoia, chief executive officer of 3ntr, an additive manufacturing system company in Oleggio, Italy.

Often the print direction chosen by operators is aimed at reducing structural support to minimize post- processing time and may not be optimal for the mechanical performance of the part. The ease of removing the AMS31F support filament gives the operator greater latitude in defining part orientation that is better suited to optimize printing efficiency and part performance.

By expanding design freedom and accelerating the support material removal process, SABIC’s new AMS31F filament adds to the value of using ULTEM™ AM9085F filament in demanding applications. High-performance ULTEM™ filament is made from SABIC’s proprietary ULTEM™ resin (PEI) technology. It provides high heat resistance and mechanical strength, is UL 94 V-0 compliant at 1.5- and 3.0-mm thicknesses and meets FAR 25.853 and OSU 55/55 requirements with low flame, smoke and toxicity evolution. ULTEM™ AM9085F filament offers excellent diameter consistency to help meet customers’ dimensional specifications. SABIC’s filaments are continuously monitored with a laser micrometer to help ensure adherence to stringent specifications for diameter consistency.

Used together, the new breakaway support filament and ULTEM™ AM9085F filament are compatible with Stratasys® Fortus® Classic printers and a variety of open architecture industrial printers.

PDH plant brought on-stream by Hyosung Corp

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Hyosung Corp has completed a maintenance turnaround at its propane dehydrogenation (PDH) plant following a turnaround, as per Apic-online.

A Polymerupdate source in South Korea informed that the company has resumed operations at the plant in mid-March 2019. The plant was taken off-line for maintenance in mid-February 2019.

Located in Ulsan, South Korea, the PDH plant has a propylene production capacity of 300,000 mt/year.

As MRC informed before, Ningbo Haiyue New Material Co has undertaken a planned maintenance at its propane dehydrogenation (PDH) plant. The company started maintenance at the plant on March 4, 2019. The turnaround is expected to remain in force for around four weeks. Located in Ningbo, China, the plant has a propylene production capacity of 600,000 mt/year.

PP imports to Russia down by 18% in January-February 2019

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Polypropylene (PP) imports into Russia slumped in the first month of 2019 by 18% year on year to 23,800 tonnes.
Propylene homopolymer (homopolymer PP) accounted for the greatest decrease, as per MRC's DataScope report.

February imports of homopolymer PP into the country grew to 15,200 tonnes, compared with 8,500 tonnes in January. The deliveries of propylene homopolymers from Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan have increased by several times. In general, total PP imports into the country increased to about 23,800 tonnes in January - February compared with 29,000 tonnes year on year. Imports of homopolymer PP decreased most of all.

Overall, the structure of PP imports by grades looked the following way over the stated period.

February imports of homopolymer PP increased to 5,000 tonnes against 1,900 tonnes a month earlier, shipments of homopolymer PP raffia from Turkmenistan increased several times. A new plant in Azerbaijan began shipments of PP. Thus, overall imports of homopolymer PP to Russia totalled about 6,900 tonnes in the first two months of 2019, compared to 9,600 tonnes a year earlier.

February imports of PP block copolymers in Russia were about 4,300 tonnes against 2,500 tonnes in January on increased demand for pipe PP several times. Imports of PP block copolymers into Russia reached 6,800 tonnes in January-February 2019, compared to 7,100 tonnes a year earlier.

February imports of PP random copolymers were about 2,800 tonnes versus 1,600 tonnes a month earlier, the volume of purchases increased by local producers of film products.

Total imports of PP random copolymers in Russia were 4,400 tonnes in January - February 2019, compared with 5,200 tonnes year on year.
Imports of other propylene polymers for the reported period increased to about 5,600 tonnes compared with 7,100 tonnes in the same time a year earlier.