Sika opens technology center in China

Sika opens technology center in China

MRC -- Sika has significantly expanded its research and development capacities in the Asia/Pacific region and opened a new, state-of-the-art Technology Center in Suzhou, China, said the company.

The primary focus of this center is the development of sustainable and high-performance technologies with which Sika makes a significant contribution to the transformation of the construction and automotive industries. The new center of excellence will play a key role in tapping market potential throughout the Asia/Pacific region. The investment volume is in the double-digit millions (CHF).

After the center in Zurich, the new Technology Center Suzhou, near Shanghai, is Sika’s secondlargest technology center, offering roughly 9,000 square meters of usable space. Approximately 150 experts at the center will be actively engaged in developing Sika’s technologies of tomorrow. By strategically expanding its research and development activities across all core technologies, Sika aims to further strengthen its innovation leadership and market presence in the Asia/Pacific region.

We remind, Sika is expanding production capacity for its ViscoCrete-brand superplasticizing concrete admixtures at its Sealy site, in Texas, US, the Swiss construction and specialty chemicals company said. With the expansion, Sika will be able to meet rising demand in the US and Canada amid reshoring efforts and the trend towards sustainable construction, it said.

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Denka JV awards work for acetylene black plant in Thailand

Denka JV awards work for acetylene black plant in Thailand

MRC -- Denka SCGC Advanced Materials has awarded Toyo Engineering an engineering and procurement contract for its planned 11,000 tonne/year acetylene black facility at Map Ta Phut in Thailand’s Rayong province, said the company.

Construction is expected to be completed in H1 2026, Toyo said in a statement on Monday. The value of the contract was not disclosed.

Denka SCGC Advanced Materials is a joint venture between Japan’s Denka and Thailand’s SCG Chemicals.

Acetylene black is a type of carbon black that is mainly used for applications such as electric vehicle (EV) lithium-ion batteries and high-voltage transmission cables for offshore wind power generation.

We remind, Denka has resumed production of chloroprene rubber at its Omi Plant at Itoigawa in Japan’s Niigata prefecture. Production was suspended following an accident on 14 June that involved a pipe bursting, killing one worker. A final report on the accident is expected to be ready in January 2024, Denka said. Capacity details were not disclosed.

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Petronas Chemicals appoints new CEO

MRC -- Petronas Chemical Group has confirmed on the appointment of a new Managing Director effective January 1 2024, the group will be replacing its current MD Mohd Yusri with Mazuin Ismail, said the company.

Mazuin who is not on the PCG management team, joined Petronas in 1991 and has more than 30 years of experience covering project execution and engineering, internal audit, governance, and business development. He also held various leadership roles within the Group in petroleum management, strategic planning and change management and some key positions include Senior Vice President (SVP) of Corporate Strategy, SVP, Project Delivery and Technology and Vice President of Technical Global. As the SVP of Corporate Strategy, he charted the national oil and gas company’s strategy and portfolio to achieve financial performance, earning stability to futureproof, and sustainability.

He also managed Groupwide merger, acquisition, and divestment activities, key highlights include the acquisition of renewable energy opportunities globally, specialty chemicals including Perstorp Holdings AB and the Da Vinci Group (BRB). As part of PETRONAS pursuit in the energy transition space at pace, he steered the Clean Energy Solutions unit (was formed in 2021) which has evolved into Gentari, PETRONAS dedicated clean energy arm. Concurrently, Mazuin is also actively involved in the advocacy of the National Energy Transition Roadmap (NETR), successfully launched in August 2023 by the Prime Minister of Malaysia.

Mazuin spearheaded the establishment of PETRONAS Corporate Venture Capital in 2018, in fortifying the Groups capacity to identify early-stage startups across Americas, Europe and APAC, to strategically navigate the dynamic landscape of emerging startups, investing in visionary entrepreneurs with breakthrough technologies and innovative business models that supports PETRONAS business growth and sustainability agenda. He also serves as a Director for various subsidiaries within PETRONAS Group.

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SIBUR strengthens Russia's global leadership as a producer of rubbers for eco-friendly tyres

SIBUR strengthens Russia's global leadership as a producer of rubbers for eco-friendly tyres

MRC -- The only domestic maker of halobutyl rubbers (HBR), SIBUR's Nizhnekamskneftekhim completed the upgrade of its HBR capacities, ramping them up by one third, from 150 to 200 kt., said the company.

Today, SIBUR accounts for 25% of butyl rubber and halobutyl rubber output globally, with Nizhnekamskneftekhim boasting the world's largest halobutyl rubber production capacity.

The RUB 8 bn upgrade project saw six new HBR production units installed and 16 revamped. The project was completed on schedule as part of the Company's agreement with the Russian Ministry of Energy to build and modernise petrochemical facilities. The plant licensor is Yarsintez Research Institute, and the general designer is Kazan National Research Technological University, one of SIBUR's anchor universities.

Rustam Minnikhanov, the Rais (Head) of Tatarstan: “Today, we have reached a significant milestone. Some 50 years ago, this facility with a design capacity of 35 ktpa produced its first batch of butyl rubber. We are now launching new halobutyl rubber capacities as part of a comprehensive upgrade to increase and automate production and meet all the latest environmental standards. The project is worth over RUB 8 bn, an impressive number. Given all the sanctions-related challenges, this is a solid performance. We are keeping a watchful eye on the petrochemical industry, as its growth is key to our economy.”

The upgraded production will fully meet domestic needs for halobutyl rubbers and step up Russia's non-commodity exports of high-margin products to the markets of friendly countries: China, Thailand, Vietnam, and India.

Halobutyl rubbers are primarily used to produce tyres with improved gas barrier and deformation resistance, along with tensile strength. An HBR component also increases tyre life by 15–20%, reduces total waste throughout the lifespan by up to 10%, and cuts fuel consumption and vehicle exhaust emissions, which makes tyres more efficient and eco-friendly. Halobutyl rubbers are also applied in the healthcare industry.

We remind, SIBUR, a Russian petrochemical company, will issue carbon credits following the registration of a solar power projects at one of its facilities. The project will be registered with the Global Carbon Council (GCC), an international carbon offsetting programme. During COP28, the Qatar-registered GCC announced the launch of its own carbon credit registry, which, among other things, will enable Russian businesses to register projects and issue carbon credits, something they are currently prevented from doing by IHS Markit, an international carbon credit market operator.

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Denka reopens polychloroprene rubber plant in Japan following accident

Denka reopens polychloroprene rubber plant in Japan following accident

MRC -- Denka has resumed production of chloroprene rubber at its Omi Plant at Itoigawa in Japan’s Niigata prefecture, the company said.

Production was suspended following an accident on 14 June that involved a pipe bursting, killing one worker.

A final report on the accident is expected to be ready in January 2024, Denka said.

Capacity details were not disclosed.

We remind, Denka SCGC Advanced Materials has awarded Toyo Engineering an engineering and procurement contract for its planned 11,000 tonne/year acetylene black facility at Map Ta Phut in Thailand’s Rayong province. Construction is expected to be completed in H1 2026, Toyo said in a statement on Monday. The value of the contract was not disclosed. Denka SCGC Advanced Materials is a joint venture between Japan’s Denka and Thailand’s SCG Chemicals.

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