MOSCOW (MRC) -- Lotte Chemical basic materials division president Hwang Jin-koo, KAIST president Lee Kwang Hyung, and others attended the ‘Lotte Chemical-KAIST Carbon Neutral Research Center’ opening ceremony held at the KAIST Energy Environment Research Center, according to SpecialChem.
The Lotte Chemical-KAIST Carbon Neutral Research Center selects technological development and economic feasibility analysis projects to conduct research in fields such as production of clean hydrogen through pyrolysis and electrolysis of waste plastics, eco-friendly naphtha production technologies, liquid organic hydrogen storage and vehicle technologies, optimization of clean hydrogen production price and reduction of carbon emissions through LCA (life-cycle assessment), etc.
Lotte Chemical will invest a total of 2 billion KRW for research expenses over the next three years until 2024 for research and development, and KAIST in Daejeon will construct an exclusive research area and install experimentation equipment, etc. for technological development.
Professor Lee Jae-woo of the KAIST department of chemical and biomolecular engineering was appointed as the director of the Carbon Neutral Research Center, and it will be joined by five professors and 23 master’s and doctorate’s level personnel. In addition, senior researchers and researchers of Lotte Chemical will also participate as members.
Lotte Chemical basic materials division president Hwang Jin-koo stated, “It is difficult for a company to solve the formidable challenge of realizing carbon neutrality alone,” adding, “We will create the two solutions of procuring future technologies and finding talented human resources through R&D on key eco-friendly technologies together with KAIST that is made up of the nation’s best researchers.”
Meanwhile, Lotte Chemical plans to speed up the pursuit of commercialization by quickly procuring future business capacities such as hydrogen, carbon neutrality, batteries, bio, etc., in addition to its existing petrochemical business unit by reinforcing open innovation research activities with the best domestic and foreign universities, research institutes, and companies in each sector including this research investment with KAIST.
As MRC reported before, Lotte Chemical plans to take off-stream its naphtha cracker in Yeosu for a scheduled maintenance this year. The company is expected to put its Yeosu naphtha cracker under scheduled maintenance around May or June, 2022. Lotte's Yeosu naphtha cracker can produce 1.2 million tonnes per year (tpy) of ethylene.
Ethylene and propylene are the main feedstocks for the production of polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), respectively.
According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 2,265,290 tonnes in the first eleven months of 2021, up by 14% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market were 1,363,850 tonnes in January-November, 2021, up by 25% year on year. Supply of homopolymer PP and block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) increased, whereas supply of injection moulding PP random copolymers decreased significantly.
Lotte Chemical runs two naphtha crackers in South Korea. One cracker is located in Daesan county in Seosan which can produce 1.1 million tonnes per year of ethylene with the other 1.2 million tonnes per year cracker in the southwestern city of Yeosu.