Toray develops eco-friendly PET film

Toray develops eco-friendly PET film

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Toray Industries, Inc., announced that it has developed a polyethylene terephthalate (PET) film that combines excellent applicability and adhesion for water-based and solvent-free coatings and can eliminate solvent-derived carbon-dioxide emissions, said the company.

The company looks to produce the film at a domestic plant by end-March 2024 to help popularize eco-friendly film products for which decarbonization during manufacturing is desirable. These items include release, adhesive, printing, packaging, and automotive films.

The environmental impacts of organic solvents in regular PET film processing have become problematic in view of global warming becoming a prime issue in recent years as a result of air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions.

This situation has driven the development of coatings free of such volatile organic compounds (VOCs) as toluene, xylene, and ethyl acetate. Such coatings eliminate carbon dioxide emissions derived from solvents. Advances include coatings in which water replaces these compounds in mold release agents, adhesives, and printing inks, as well as solvent-free versions employing monomers to dilute ingredients. Still, VOC-free coatings have downsides. They include appearance defects such as peeling when applied on PET films. Other issues are poor adhesion between coated layers and PET films after drying, resulting in lifting and peeling that reduces durability.

Toray’s new PET film has both good applicability for water-based paints and good adhesion to films after it is dried. This was achieved by forming an ultra-thin layer with nanosized dispersion of hydrophilic components with high affinity to water and hydrophobic components with high affinity to the resin on the surface of the film.

This film has demonstrated outstanding applicability and adhesion for an array of water-based offerings from paint manufacturers. Coating and adhesion is also excellent with solvent-free coatings, which are also VOC-free.

PET film processing generally emits carbon dioxide from coating and drying printing inks, release agents, and adhesives, as well as from consuming electricity in curing, releasing organic solvents into the atmosphere through incineration, and disposing of solvent effluents and waste. The film makes it possible to use VOC-free paints and thus eliminate the carbon dioxide emissions associated with organic solvents.

We remind, Toray Industries' offshoots Toray Advanced Materials Korea and Toray Textiles Central Europe have built new sites in the Czech Republic to boost the Airlite automotive interior sound acoustic insulation operation in the European region. It has a manufacturing capacity of 1200 tonnes/y. Another offshoot, Toray Carbon Fibers Europe, will spend EUR 100 M to install a new manufacturing line at its facility in South West France.

INEOS acquires major concrete additives business from Sika

INEOS acquires major concrete additives business from Sika

MOSCOW (MRC) -- INEOS Enterprises has today signed an agreement to acquire MBCC Group’s Admixture Business from Sika AG, said the company.

The admixture business is a leading producer of concrete additives essential for the construction industry, with well invested operations across 35 manufacturing sites and sales of around USD1 billion.

The business employs more than 1600 people, which produce and supply a broad chemicals portfolio for concrete manufacturing and underground construction, across the US, Canada, Europe, Australia and New Zealand.

The deal which is part of a required remedy process for Sika to acquire the MBCC Group, is subject to regulatory approvals and is targeted to complete in the first half of this year.

The deal will maintain the level of innovation, services and quality in chemical admixtures available to concrete producers.

Thomas Hasler, CEO of Sika: “The agreement with INEOS Enterprises marks a key milestone in Sika’s acquisition of MBCC Group. I am convinced that we have found a long-term home for the MBCC Group’s Admixture business. The perfect new owner who will further develop the business together with a talented and driven MBCC Group team. At the same time, Sika has taken a tremendous leap forward on its path to joining forces with MBCC Group and together we will strengthen our growth platform further.”

We remind, INEOS and SINOPEC have completed two of the four significant petrochemical deals announced earlier this year. The two deals are: SECCO joint venture. INEOS has acquired 50% of Shanghai SECCO Petrochemical Company Limited. ABS joint venture. INEOS and SINOPEC have also established a 50:50 joint venture for ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene), based on INEOS’ world leading proprietary ABS Technology.

ALPLA on course for success with record turnover of EUR5.1 bn

ALPLA on course for success with record turnover of EUR5.1 bn

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The ALPLA Group can look back on a successful financial year 2022 in spite of the crisis, said the company.

Sales of 5.1 billion euros exceeded the previous year’s figure by 27.5 per cent. In addition to the company’s growth strategy, the record turnover reflects the significantly higher costs for energy, materials, staff and transport. In 2023, the packaging and recycling specialist will focus on expanding its injection moulding capacities, investing in recycling, expanding its Pharma division and researching alternative materials.

ALPLA continued its international growth trajectory in 2022, expanding production capacities, increasing staff numbers and posting sales growth of 27.5 per cent. The international specialist for packaging solutions and recycling therefore achieved a positive annual result despite massive increases in energy prices and a shortage of raw materials. Newly opened sites, acquisitions and expansions resulted in more than 1,000 additional employees. The number of plants increased from 177 to 190.

‘The packaging industry will be dealing with high costs, changes in demand and changing consumer behaviour for a long time to come. We use efficiency, innovation and recycling expertise to realise safe, affordable and sustainable plastic solutions in times of crisis too,’ emphasises ALPLA CEO Philipp Lehner. In addition to targeted acquisitions, the key factors contributing to the success were close and long-standing partnerships, strong regional roots and the expedited expansion of recycling capacities.

The long-term aim is for the company to grow by four to five per cent annually. In addition to capacity expansions in its core business, ALPLA is also planning strategic investments in injection moulding, increased involvement in the pharmaceutical sector and the expansion of the global circular economy. At the same time, there will be research into alternative, bio-based and biodegradable materials. ‘We are striving for long-term sustainable growth, strengthening our global presence, promoting recyclable products, minimising the use of resources and energy consumption, and expanding our portfolio,’ announces Lehner.

The focus is primarily on the growth markets of Africa, the Middle East, Asia and North America. In the area of recycling, ALPLA has been investing more than 50 million euros annually in capacity expansions and technology development since 2021. For there to be more packaging which is both recyclable and affordable, closed loops and sufficient materials are needed. ALPLA is therefore planning to double the annual production of recycled materials at its own plants by 2026 and is supporting the development and optimisation of local collection systems around the world.

We remind, the packaging and recycling specialist ALPLA has realised a carbon-optimised prototype solution as a showcase for future products with its innovative Canupak beauty care packaging. The ultralight packaging system with a bottle made entirely of recycled HDPE (rHDPE) underscores the company’s global sustainability strategy. ALPLA is therefore offering its customers further potential to reduce emissions as well as expertise for future developments.

Sumitomo Bakelite Europe NV acquires ISCC PLUS certification

Sumitomo Bakelite Europe NV acquires ISCC PLUS certification
MOSCOW (MRC) -- Sumitomo Bakelite Co., Ltd., announced that Sumitomo Bakelite Europe NV (SBE), subsidiary company in Belgium, has become the first member of our group to obtain international sustainability carbon certification/ISCC PLUS (International Sustainability and Carbon Certification) certification for its phenolic resins, said the company.

The ISCC (International Sustainability and Carbon Certification) is already recognized worldwide as a certification system for the processing of biobased and bio-circular materials and is widely used in Europe.

The ISCC PLUS certification, for which SBE was recently certified, is a certification system that manages and secures products such as biomass raw materials and recycled raw materials manufactured by the mass balance method* in the supply chain.

After obtaining ISCC PLUS certification, products manufactured with sustainable ingredients assigned by the mass balance method can be sold with the ISCC certification mark specified for each sustainable raw materials, and it is possible to prove that the raw materials are sustainable by ensuring transparency in the supply chain.

We remind, Sumitomo Bakelite, a Japanese plastic products and phenolic resin producer, has disclosed that its China arm, Sumitomo Bakelite (Suzhou), has decided to buy new land and construct a new facility to expand its production capacity for semiconductor packaging materials. Sumitomo Bakelite estimates that it now holds the largest global market share (nearly 40%) for Sumikon EME, epoxy resin moulding substances for encapsulation of semiconductor devices. The planned project will increase China capacity by 1.3 times. The firm intends to finalize the installation of the building and production line in FY 2023 and begin production in early FY 2024. Nearly $45 M will be spent on the project, including buildings, land, manufacturing lines, and ancillary units.

China petrochemical plant shut after deadly explosion

China petrochemical plant shut after deadly explosion

MOSCOW (MRC) -- China's Panjin Haoye Chemical Co Ltd has shut down its entire oil refinery and petrochemical complex after an explosion on Sunday killed five people and left eight missing, according to trade sources and a local consultancy, said Reuters.

The explosion occurred at 3:13 p.m. (0713 GMT) on Sunday at Panjin Haoye while workers were carrying out maintenance work at an alkylation facility, Chinese state television reported earlier on Monday.

Calls to Panjin Haoye for comment went unanswered. The death toll increased from two to five by Monday evening.

The company is an independent refinery and chemical producer in the city of Panjin in Liaoning province in northeastern China.

Thirty people were also lightly injured, according to the initial TV report, which said a fire resulting from the explosion has been brought under control.

We remind, Saudi Aramco's new projects in South Korea and China highlight the power giant's goals to expand its chemicals business, as it attempts to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. On 9 Dec 2022, the world's top crude oil producer inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with China-based Shandong Energy Group to jointly work on incorporated petrochemical and refining opportunities in the eastern region.