Shin-Etsu Chemical to further drive forward its QST substrate business for implementation in GaN power devices

Shin-Etsu Chemical to further drive forward its QST substrate business for implementation in GaN power devices

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Shin-Etsu Chemical Co., Ltd. (Head Office: Tokyo; President: Yasuhiko Saitoh) has determined that QST® (Qromis Substrate Technology) substrate 1 is an essential material for the social implementation of high-performance, energy-efficient GaN (gallium nitride) power devices, and the company will promote the development and launching on the market of these products, said the company.

Since QST® substrate is designed to have the same coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) as GaN, it enables suppression of warpage and cracking of the GaN epitaxial layer and resultant large-diameter, high-quality thick GaN epitaxial growth. Taking advantage of these characteristics, it is expected to be applied to power devices and RF devices (5G and beyond 5G), which have been rapidly growing in recent years, as well as in such areas as MicroLED growth for MicroLED displays.

In addition to sales of QST® substrates, Shin-Etsu Chemical will also sell GaN grown QST® substrates upon customer request. We currently have a line-up of 6? and 8? diameter substrates, and we are working on 12? diameter substrates. Since 2021, for each respective application for power devices, RF devices and LEDs, sample evaluation and device development are continuing with numerous customers in Japan and globally. Especially for power devices, continuous evaluation is underway for devices in the wide range of 650V to 1800V.

So far, Shin-Etsu Chemical has repeatedly made many improvements with regard to its QST® substrates. One example is the significant improvement in lowering defects originating from the bonding process, which has enabled the supply of high-quality QST® substrates. In addition, for the thicker GaN films that many of our customers have requested, we have promoted the provision of template substrates with optimized buffer layers, which enables our customers to realize stable epitaxial growth of more than 10 ?m thickness. Furthermore, various successful results have been produced and reported on, including the achievement of thick-film GaN growth exceeding 20 ?m using QST® substrates and the achievement of 1800V breakdown voltage*2 in power devices.

We remind, Shin-Etsu Chemical is investing Yen 100 bn (around USD720 M) in its silicones portfolio, one of its central parts of its Functional Materials business segment. The new investment will be used in its Naoetsu plant in Niigata Prefecture, Takefu plant in Fukui Prefecture and its Group company plant in Thailand. The company will also invest further in its present silicone plants in other Asian countries, Hungary, and the US.

Ampacet Introduces Antistatic Masterbatch for Pharma Grade Polyolefins Films

Ampacet Introduces Antistatic Masterbatch for Pharma Grade Polyolefins Films

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Ampacet introduces ProVital Permstat, a non-migratory antistatic masterbatch specifically developed to provide immediate and permanent antistatic properties to polyolefin films used in pharmaceutical processes, said Specialchem.

Ampacet ProVital™+ Permstat, when used in the external layers of packaging films, creates a dissipative polymeric network within the bulk layer of the film, allowing the electrostatic charges accumulated on the film surface to dissipate throughout the external layer.

The antistatic effect is immediate, consistent during the lifetime of the film and lasts as long as the film is in use. Thanks to its dissipative effect, ProVital™+ Permstat efficiently empties powder from packaging materials, preventing some particles from remaining inside of the bag due to the static effect.

In sealed bags, the use of ProVital™+ Permstat eliminates the presence of static powder in the sealing area. ProVital™+ Permstat can be incorporated into polyethylene cleanroom films, which are used to store and transfer pharmaceutical raw materials or active pharmaceutical ingredients used in drug production.

ProVital™+ Permstat provides full consistency of formulation with a no-change policy for raw materials at the CAS and commercial level, with manufacturing under consistent process parameters and controlled-room production to minimize cross contamination risks.

We remind, LANXESS has doubled its production capacity for benzyl alcohol at its site in Kalama, WA, US, to support the growth of its established customer base in the Americas. The capacity expansion is the result of various technical upgrades. LANXESS also produces benzyl alcohol at its sites in Krefeld-Uerdingen (Germany), Botlek (Netherlands), and Nagda (India).

North America chem rail traffic rises

North America chem rail traffic rises

MOSCOW (MRC) -- North American chemical rail traffic rose for a third consecutive week, with railcar loadings for the week ended 2 September up 7.4% year on year to 47,935, according to Association of American Railroads.

For the first 35 weeks of 2023 ended 2 September, North American chemical rail traffic was down 1.9% year on year to 1,586,547 loadings - with the US down 3.3% to 1,090,574.

In the US, chemical railcar loadings represent about 20% of chemical transportation by tonnage, with trucks, barges and pipelines carrying the rest. In Canada, chemical producers rely on rail to ship more than 70% of their products, with some exclusively using rail.

We remind, North American chemical railcar traffic rose for a third straight week as increases in Canada and Mexico narrowly offset a 2.6% decline in the USA. For the first 31 weeks of 2023 ended 5 August, North American chemical rail traffic was down 2.4% year on year to 1,401,493 - with the US down 3.7% to 964,646 loadings.

Switch to recycled polymers, says Axion Polymers

Switch to recycled polymers, says Axion Polymers

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Businesses across all industries should embrace recycled polymers as a vital tool in achieving their sustainability goals, says Manchester, UK-based plastics recycler Axion Polymers, said Sustainableplastics.

Using recycled raw materials to make new goods can be an important step with significant impact for manufacturers looking to move towards net zero and comply with industry regulations and laws.

Axion produces a range of Axpoly recycled polymer grades that are manufactured in the UK to ISO9001 quality standards and are REACH and RoHS compliant. Its engineering polymers are suitable for use in a range of injection moulding applications, from vehicle components to consumer electronics and construction products. The company also boasts laboratory facilities enabling the in-house material testing of its recycled polymer infeed and finished products. Axpoly recycled polymer grades comply with permitted levels of substances of very high concern (SVHCs) and persistent organic pollutants (POPs). Using Axpoly PP gives an 81% carbon saving and using Axpoly ABS gives a 90% carbon saving, compared with using virgin polymer.

Using these materials will allow manufacturers to comply, for example, with the new regulation proposed in the EU, aimed at improving the circularity of materials in vehicle manufacture. This regulation mandates that 25% of the plastic used to build a new vehicle is recycled plastic, of which 25% must be recycled from end-of-life vehicles.

Axion Polymers has a secure infeed material supply from its parent company S. Norton Group. The company uses process technology which converts non-metallic waste from end-of-life vehicles and waste electronic goods into recycled plastics, aggregates for construction, and alternative fuels supplying to energy from waste plants. The Group operates two processing plants in the Manchester area, with primary sorting taking place at Trafford Park and polymer refining and extrusion at Salford.

"At S. Norton Group, we’re proud our processes showcase how plastic waste can be harnessed to create valuable new products thereby conserving precious resources, reducing dependence on landfill and protecting the environment from greenhouse gas emissions,” said Laura Smith, commercial manager - polymers and co-products, Axion Polymers.

Tony Hayer, S. Norton managing director, added that “At a time of great change in the plastics industry, when businesses are facing mounting pressure to adopt circular practices and reduce their environmental footprint, using recycled polymers has plenty of benefits, including reduced demand for oil-based virgin polymer and significant carbon savings.”

Axion Polymers will be exhibiting at this year’s Interplas, 26-28 September 2023 at NEC, Birmingham, in Hall 4 stand A8.

We remind, Avantium, a pioneer in the emerging renewable and sustainable chemicals industry, is building a new plant that will support the transition to bio-based plastics to replace ones that rely on fossil-based raw materials.
Located in Delfzijl, The Netherlands, the facility will use a novel technology that converts plant sugars into a next-generation plastic material called polyethylene furanoate (PEF).

New Study Reveals that Sweat may Leach Flame-retardant Chemicals from Microplastics

New Study Reveals that Sweat may Leach Flame-retardant Chemicals from Microplastics

MOSCOW (MRC) -- A new study at the University of Birmingham shows human sweat has been found to leach toxic chemicals out of microplastics and are potentially making them available to be absorbed through skin, said Specialchem.

The team looked at microplastics taken from common forms of plastic and tested them with a synthetic sweat in a lab. They analyzed the bio accessibility of brominated flame retardants (a class of chemical used to improve the performance of plastics) after microplastics have come into contact with sweat.

These found that in all examples, the toxic chemicals leached out of the plastic particles and as a result, these chemicals may be absorbed through layers of skin.

The paper, published in Environmental Science and Technology found that polyethylene microplastics were the worst for bio accessibility of the flame-retardant chemicals which have been previously found in animal studies to cause adverse health effects including neurotoxicity, reproductive toxicity and cancer.

Dr Ovokeroye Abafe, Marie-Curie Research fellow at the University of Birmingham and first author of the paper said, “The study provides new insights into the risk that arises from our exposure to microplastics in daily life. Our skin is constantly exposed to microplastics either through our clothing, cosmetics, indoor and outdoor dust particles, or even from the air.”

“We have shown the first experimental evidence that toxic additive chemicals can leach out from microplastics to our sweat and become available for absorption through the skin. This raises concern over potential adverse effects of these chemicals, including endocrine disruption, neurotoxicity, obesity, and cancer”, Dr Abafe concluded.

We remind, LANXESS has doubled its production capacity for benzyl alcohol at its site in Kalama, WA, US, to support the growth of its established customer base in the Americas. The capacity expansion is the result of various technical upgrades. LANXESS also produces benzyl alcohol at its sites in Krefeld-Uerdingen (Germany), Botlek (Netherlands), and Nagda (India).