Hexion completes capacity expansion for fire protection product

Hexion completes capacity expansion for fire protection product

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Hexion has completed the expansion of its Missoula, Montana site in support of its ArmorBuilt Wildfire Shield product, said the company.

Hexion’s ArmorBuilt Fire Protection product offers a durable, fire mitigation safeguard for securing critical infrastructure or other building materials. ArmorBuilt Wildfire Shield is a smart material triggered by heat to form an insulation layer and protect the underlying pole and related infrastructure. It has been commercially available since March 2019 and approximately 100,000 utility poles are protected by ArmorBuilt in the field today. In September 2022, during the California Mosquito fire, ArmorBuilt Wildfire Shield protected multiple utility poles from burning, while several vehicles in close proximity unfortunately melted due to the fire. By using ArmorBuilt to protect critical infrastructure, utility poles can remain vertical and allow first responders access to the fire, while others can safely escape the area.

"ArmorBuilt Wrap improves electrical grid resiliency and helps prevent loss of life by keeping protected poles upright," said Sanjeev Rastogi, Senior Vice President, Global Resins. "By safeguarding key infrastructure, Hexion’s ArmorBuilt Wildfire Shield delivers precious life-saving time by keeping critical passages open to first responders and evacuees that may otherwise become blocked by downed poles. We believe that this product can truly help save lives."

"For more than a century, Hexion has delivered sustainable product innovations and technologies that enhance everyday life. Merging fire science and smart materials, Hexion’s ArmorBuilt Wildfire Shield instantly swells and seals around the pole to create a protective and effective heat insulation barrier. Finally, we continue to develop additional applications for a variety of industries as ArmorBuilt Shield can play a critical role in fire hardening protection for other critical infrastructure, residential and commercial applications."

We remind, Hexion Inc. announced that it has begun using bio-based methanol in the production of formaldehyde at its Baytown, Texas, manufacturing site. The formaldehyde is then provided to a key customer that leverages bio-benzene to produce methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI), ultimately offering a product with more sustainable attributes through significantly lower air emissions compared to those produced with fossil fuel-based methanol.


Hanwha Solutions invests to produce PV materials in Georgia

Hanwha Solutions invests to produce PV materials in Georgia

MOSCOW (MRC) -- South Korea's Hanwha Solutions Corp said its unit Hanwha Q Cells will invest a total of USD2.5 billion to build a solar power manufacturing value chain in the U.S. state of Georgia through June 2025, said Reuters.

The company's board approved on Wednesday a USD2.31 investment to build a solar power ingot, wafer, cell and module factory, the company said in a regulatory filing.

This is in addition to a roughly USD200 billion U.S. investment approved late last year, a Hanwha Solutions spokesperson said.

With the investment, the company is expected to increase its solar module production capacity in the United States from 1.7 gigawatts as of 2022 to 8.4 gigawatts as of 2024, Hanwha Solutions said in a press conference.

Hanwha Solutions said it expects the large-scale investment to effectively respond to the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), which includes tax credits and other government support for the renewable energy industry in response to climate change.

We remind, Hanwha Solutions Corp., Hanwha Group’s energy services arm, is entering into a sizeable co-investment to strengthen its solar power business. The company’s chemical division and Korea’s GS Energy Corp. have agreed to launch a joint venture to produce ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) at Yeosu Industrial Complex, South Jeolla Province, Hanwha Solutions said on Wednesday. Solar EVA sheets are a core part of solar power panels for enhancing durability and performance. Hanwha Solutions’ chemical division produces EVA for the sheets that the company’s advanced materials unit makes.

BASF breaks ground on MDI capacity expansion project at Geismar site

BASF breaks ground on MDI capacity expansion project at Geismar site

MOSCOW (MRC) -- BASF has broken ground on the third and final phase of the methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI) expansion project at its Verbund site in Geismar, Louisiana, announced in July 2022, said the company.

The company will increase production capacity to approximately 600,000 metric tons per year by the middle of the decade to support the ongoing growth of its North American MDI customers.

The investment for this final expansion phase, which takes place from 2022 to 2025, amounts to $780 million. Including the first and second phases, the investment volume totals around USD1 billion, making the MDI expansion project BASF’s largest wholly owned investment in North America. “BASF already ranks among the largest and most forward-looking chemical companies in the United States,” said Michael Heinz, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, BASF Corporation.

“Through this investment, we demonstrate our commitment to meeting the needs of our customers while strengthening our foundation for continued growth in the important U.S. market.” BASF welcomed Clay Schexnayder, Speaker of the House for the Louisiana State Legislature for a ceremonial ‘tilling-of-the soil’ to officially mark the groundbreaking of the final phase of the expansion.

“We are committed to continuing the success story together with our North American MDI customers,” said Stefan Doerr, Senior Vice President, Monomers North America. “BASF is investing to support our customers in various industries with significant growth potential in MDI applications, including transportation, automotive, footwear and furniture."

Kicked off in 2018, the expansion project follows a staggered approach. First, a new MDI synthesis unit was put in operation in October of 2020. The second phase, which started operations in 2021, expanded several existing upstream units. The third and final phase will add new upstream units and a splitter.

Leveraging stateof-the-art technology, the expansion will showcase the highest safety standards combined with advanced digitalization in its operations.

We remind, BASF, Linde, and SABIC have begun the construction of the "world's first" demonstration plant for large-scale electrically heated steam cracker furnaces. The new technology has the potential to lower CO2 emissions by using electricity from renewable sources instead of natural gas. The demonstration plant will be integrated into the existing steam crackers at BASF's Verbund site in Ludwigshafen, Germany.

JM and bp announce successful production using FT CANS waste-to-fuels technology

JM and bp announce successful production using FT CANS waste-to-fuels technology

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Johnson Matthey and bp plc (London) announced that their technology has enabled Fulcrum’s Sierra BioFuels Plant to successfully produce synthetic crude oil for clean transportation fuels, said Chemengonline.

Using JM and bp’s FT CANS technology, the Sierra plant is the world’s first commercial-scale plant to use household rubbish as a feedstock which would otherwise be destined for landfill.

Located outside of Reno, Nevada, it uses JM and bp’s FT CANS technology to convert waste into synthesis gas, which can then be converted to fuels.

The plant will produce synthetic crude oil, which is expected to ultimately be refined to approximately 11 million gallons of renewable, low-carbon transportation fuels each year from approximately 175,000 tons of landfill waste.

JM and bp signed their first licence with waste-to-fuels developer Fulcrum to use their award-winning FT CANS technology in 2018.

Alberto Giovanzana, Chief Commercial Officer of Catalyst Technologies at Johnson Matthey, said: “We’ve worked in partnership with bp, creating deep technology insights for more than a decade. This close collaboration has led to the significant milestone we’re seeing today. The ability to convert household waste into low-cost, low carbon transportation fuel is truly innovative and is a crucial step in decarbonising transport."

Noemie Turner, VP technology development & commercialisation at bp, added: “We’re excited that commercial-scale use of our Fischer Tropsch technology built on a foundation of top-class research and development, in collaboration with our technology partner, Johnson Matthey could help support the decarbonization of the transport sector."

JM and bp have been developing FT technology together over a number of years and have collaborated over the past decade to accelerate this latest enhanced technology.

We remind, Shell has qualified Johnson Matthey’s (JM) PURAVOC GREENTM purification catalysts for use in its global hydrogen production projects. JM’s catalysts will be used to remove trace oxygen to meet oxygen specifications in the production of high purity, zero carbon hydrogen. Removal of oxygen is critical to make the process safer and more efficient. Deoxygenation is an essential step in the production of green hydrogen and requires a flexible and robust catalyst that can operate under a variety of pressures, relatively low temperatures, and intermittent feed flows.


Chemours invests in ion exchange materials for clean hydrogen

Chemours invests in ion exchange materials for clean hydrogen

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Chemours (Wilmington, Delaware) has announced a USD200-million investment to increase capacity for its Nafion fluoropolymer copolymer ion exchange materials at its manufacturing facility in Villers-Saint-Paul, France, said the company.

The ion exchange materials are used for water electrolyzers, energy storage in flow batteries, and hydrogen conversion to power fuel cell vehicles to help support the clean hydrogen economy.

Chemours has an existing robust and reliable ion exchange material capacity in the US to help support the hydrogen supply chain and this new expansion will contribute to Europe’s energy transition as well as expand the Villers-Saint-Paul site’s capabilities to be able support and advance technological progress for the worldwide hydrogen economy, Chemours says.

“Chemours has chosen France for this investment in the hydrogen economy because of the strong alignment between our sustainable growth vision, the French government’s goal to create a reliable and strong hydrogen economy, and the European Union’s ambition to deliver a clean energy transition based on the objectives set in the EU Climate Law,” Mark Newman, Chemours’ president and CEO, says.

Despite robust growth in green hydrogen technologies, more urgent scaling-up of the hydrogen supply chain capacity remains critical in meeting clean hydrogen potential and escalating demand, Chemours says. The proton exchange membrane (PEM) technology is an advancement for its faster start-up; reliance on fewer components; and its smaller footprint, simpler maintenance, and zero emissions when used coupled with renewable energy, the company says.

We remind, Chemours Company (Wilmington, Del.) announced that it will be expanding its Chemours Opteon YF (HFO-1234yf) capacity to help meet customer needs as they continue transitioning to lower GWP refrigerants. The Opteon YF and YF blends refrigerants are now used in millions of vehicles and thousands of retail stores around the world, with zero ozone depletion potential (ODP) and global warming potential (GWP) that is significantly lower than the legacy refrigerants.

Chemours is committed to leadership in responsible manufacturing, and this capacity investment will contribute to its goal of shifting the company’s product portfolio to offerings that contribute to achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). Chemours is evaluating potential locations in the United States and Europe for the investment in accordance with applicable regulatory frameworks and is particularly interested in supporting the local communities where they operate.