Dunlop, BASF unleash the performance within tennis rackets

Modern day tennis players tend to play with more spin and as a result, hit the ball out of the top of the racket rather than the centre. The disadvantage of this is players swing with more force to generate more power and spin. This puts extra load on the player’s arm and can result in injury. The Dunlop research team observed this trend and employed a new innovation to resolve this aspect – the Sonic Core made with BASF’s Infinergy. Designed for the tennis player looking for strong cushioning, high rebound, speed, and lightweight performance, the Sonic Core is built with intuitive design and technology principles unmatched in the industry. Read More

Sika AG is adding strength and capacity to its Mexican product supply chain in the Automotive sector with the opening of a new manufacturing facility in Queretaro, Mexico. The new factory, which includes an integrated logistics center, will manufacture and locally supply Sika’s full range of acoustic treatments and body structural products for the growing number of Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) assembly and component makers located in the country. The Mexican subsidiary of Faist ChemTec, acquired by Sika at the start of 2018, will also be integrated into the new facility. The Mexican automotive market has grown by 25% in the last four years, and an estimated four million vehicles will be produced in the country in 2018. Read More

Archroma has introduced its new Cartastrength DST.03 for stronger packaging and tissue papers and improved stickies management during the production process. Archroma is already well known in the paper industry for its portfolio covering the needs of packaging and paper makers, in particular with its solutions for colours, barriers & coatings, whiteness and strength. With its focus on increasing performance and sustainability for its customers, both during the manufacturing process and in the end product, Archroma is committed to introducing innovations especially aimed at making fast-growing sectors – such as packaging and tissue paper – more sustainable. Read More

BASF said that it is increasing prices for their polycarboxylate ether (PCE) based polymers for concrete admixtures in Europe (Melflux brand). With immediate effect, the prices will be increased by 10-12 percent.  Contractual agreements with customers are being kept. This increase has become necessary in an environment of rising freight and logistics costs as well as raw material costs for basic and intermediate chemicals. Read More


ExxonMobil starts sulfur fuels production at new Beaumont unit

ExxonMobil NV said that a new unit at its integrated Beaumont, Texas facility has started operations, increasing production of ultra-low sulphur fuels by about 45,000 barrels per day. The new unit relies on a proprietary catalyst system developed by ExxonMobil to remove sulphur and meet US Environmental Protection Agency specifications while minimizing octane loss. The addition of the new unit, ExxonMobil’s second major investment in Beaumont in less than two years, has supported more than 800 construction jobs. In 2016, the company increased the capacity of an existing crude unit by 20,000 barrels per day and added the flexibility to process light crudes. Both projects are components of ExxonMobil’s Growing the Gulf initiative. Read More

Brenntag North America Inc, part of the Brenntag Group has opened a new food & nutrition application & development centre. The Brenntag North America food & nutrition application & development centre in Allentown, PA has officially opened. Through this centre, further support will be provided to customers in the United States and Canada who face food and nutrition formulation challenges with technical solutions and inventive ideas. The centre will be fully equipped to handle new product development and ingredient application assistance in all areas within the food and nutrition industry. Read More

Computer simulations have zoomed in on the role of superplasticizers in concrete performance. Modelling how superplasticizers can reduce water proportions in cement mixtures may help develop more efficient superplasticizers, as well as enhance concrete performance, shows the first comprehensive study conducted by A*STAR. Superplasticizers are polymers that act as dispersants in cement mixtures. They hinder the aggregation of the cement particles, allowing dramatic reductions in the volume of water in the mixture without impacting on its flow and workability. Read More

Leather chemicals are a class of products that are used in the treatment of animal hides for the production of leather. Leather chemicals are required at different stages of leather processing which includes beam house, tanning and finishing, fat liquors and water repellents and drum dyeing. Leather is an unmatched material for making accessory products and item. In order to make the leather for long lasting for use and to create an appealing richness of leather, many leather chemicals are used. Increasing demand for various leather made products such as apparels, footwear, garments, furniture and automotive upholstery positively influence the demand of leather chemicals and helps in further growth of leather chemical market. Read More

Indorama Ventures, Loop Industries form JV for PET recycling

Indorama Ventures, Loop Industries form JV for PET recycling

Indorama Ventures Public Company Limited and Loop Industries Inc announced a joint venture to manufacture and commercialize sustainable polyester resin. This partnership brings together Indorama Venture’s world-class manufacturing footprint and Loop’s proprietary science and technology to become a reliable world leader in the ‘circular’ economy for 100 percent sustainable and recycled PET resin and polyester fibre. The Indorama Ventures/Loop Industries partnership launches a commercial solution for consumer packaged goods companies in response to the rapid growth in global plastic consumption for which there is a great need to responsibly collect and reuse these materials. Read More

Thermo Fisher Scientific has designed the Thermo Scientific ISQ EM single quadrupole mass spectrometer for high performance and productivity standards in laboratories. With a mass range of 10-2000 m/z, the system offers the power to detect and quantify small and large molecules, and supports analytical needs across an extensive range of applications­ – from drug development to manufacturing support and quality control. The system’s high-performing heated electrospray ionization (HESI) and dual HESI/atmospheric pressure chemical ionization (APCI) probes facilitate the measurement of polar and non-polar analytes, enabling application flexibility. Read More

Solvay SA will raise production capacity of Solef PVDF (polyvinylidene fluoride) high performance polymers in France, by more than 35 percent. Addressing the strong global demand growth mainly for applications in lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles, reinforcing its technological leadership and customer support worldwide. The new capacity, from investing in new assets, should be operational by end of 2019. Solef PVDF optimizes energy storage efficiency and reduces battery weight in electric vehicles or consumer electronics. Other growing applications include offshore oil and gas pipes and liners and membranes for water purification. Read More

Total SA has agreed to buy all the shares of Chevron Denmark Inc from Chevron Corporation. Chevron Denmark holds a 12 percent interest in the Danish Underground Consortium (DUC) and a 7.5 percent interest in the Tyra West pipeline. This acquisition will increase Total’s operated share of DUC from 31.2 percent to 43.2 percent, the other partners of the consortium are Shell (36.8 percent) and Nordsofonden (20 percent, owned by the Danish State). The consortium, which started production in 1972, currently operates 15 fields, all located in the Central Graben sector of the North Sea. It covers nearly 90 percent of the Danish oil and gas production. In 2017 the production averaged 182,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d). Read More

Total acquires G2mobility, strengthens electric vehicle charging sector

Total SA has finalized the acquisition of G2mobility, a French leading provider of electric vehicle charging solutions. With this deal, Total is accelerating the growth of its electric vehicle charging businesses, from designing smart charging stations to optimizing energy usage management and selling integrated services. A leader in the sector since 2009, G2mobility has developed and markets a comprehensive charging solution, with connected charging stations operated by a web platform that can remotely control the charge points, offer services, particularly smart energy management systems. Read More


Afton Chemical Corporation has completed the Phase II expansion of its chemical additive manufacturing facility in Jurong Island, Singapore. Afton began its Singapore manufacturing operations in May 2016, when it announced the Phase I opening of its Jurong Island plant. Phase II’s investment of S$222 million is more than Phase I’s initial investment of S$158 million, bringing the total investment in Singapore to S$380 million. Phase II’s expansion kickstarts production of advanced ashless dispersants and anti-wear components. All are critical components in several of Afton’s products and will help passenger vehicles and commercial vehicles meet performance standards of the future. Read More

ExxonMobil said it will join the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative (OGCI), a voluntary initiative representing 13 of the world’s largest oil and gas producers working collaboratively toward solutions to mitigate the risks of climate change. The CEO-led organization focuses on developing practical solutions in areas including carbon capture and storage, methane emissions reductions and energy and transportation efficiency. As part of the initiative, ExxonMobil will expand its investment in research and development of long-term solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions as well as partnerships and multi-stakeholder initiatives that will pursue lower-emission technologies. Read More

Vital role of Chemistry behind Anger

Have you ever been so mad that you felt hot headed, blood boiling, palms sweating? Yes, I’m sure everyone would have experienced all this while in anger. Anger is an actually very interesting thing if you think about it. There goes on a lot of chemistry when you become angry. Let us first know about what actually is anger. Anger is an emotional response natural and most of the time an automatic response to one or another form of pain like emotional or physical pain. William DeFoore, a writer of anger-management has expressed anger as a pressure cooker; one can apply pressure against anger only for a certain period of time up till it explodes. Read More

AkzoNobel acquires Spanish decorative paints firm Xylazel

AkzoNobel NV (AKZA; AKZOY) has acquired Xylazel SA (Xylazel), a 100 percent subsidiary of Pharma Mar SA (PHM). With this acquisition AkzoNobel strengthens its business and becomes a leader in the decorative paints market in Spain. It also means the company is now the leader in the country’s woodcare segment and has strengthened its position in metal care. The transaction marks the 45-year anniversary of AkzoNobel on the Spanish market. Xylazel has about 100 employees, with one production facility in Porrino. Revenue for 2017 totalled approximately €20 million. Read More

ONCAP has purchased a majority stake in Walter Surface Technologies (Walter), in partnership with the existing management team. The Walter Group will retain a minority interest in the company. Walter is a leading provider of innovative solutions for the metal working industry. Its premium, consumable metal working solutions include abrasives, tooling, power tools, chemical solutions and welding process solutions. The company sells its portfolio of products to a diverse array of end markets, including metal fabrication, transportation, construction, energy, mining, forestry and lumber, food and pharmaceuticals. Read More
By Shivani Mody: Essential oils, absolutes and oleoresin have added a lot of value to the growth of the flavour & fragrance industry as well as agriculture. Today, showing great promising healing powers, various oils are used in aromatherapy for mood relaxation to reduce the side effects of aggressive therapies. However, the use of essential oils is unregulated in the country. The imperative need has therefore been felt for growing essential oil-bearing plants and crops under the diversified farming programme, which have proved to be cash crops offering much better returns to the farmers. Read More
Global electronic chemicals market is expected to rise with CAGR of 7 percent during forecast period 2017-2024. Key factors driving the market growth are high adoption of solar energy, increasing demand for smartphone, computers etc and increasing use of semiconductors in industries such as aviation, defense etc and development of environment friendly chemicals. Decrease in demand of silicon wafers, semiconductor counterfeiting and stringent regulations are expected to restrain the market growth. However, growing advancements and technological inventions in electronic chemicals and wide adoption among end users are expected to provide lucrative market opportunities. Read More

BASF develops world’s first particle foam based on polyethersulfone

BASF SE has presented prototypes of the world’s first particle foam based on polyethersulfone (PESU), after two years of intensive research. The foam is characterized by its unique combination of properties: high-temperature resistance, inherent flame retardancy – and its extreme light weight coupled with great stiffness and strength. It is therefore particularly well suited for complex-shaped components in cars, airplanes and trains, which require excellent mechanical properties together with the ability to withstand high operating temperatures or to meet stringent flame-retardant requirements. The expandable PESU granulate is pre-foamed into beads with low densities between 40 and 120 g/L… Read More

Phosphoric acid, also known as orthophosphoric acid, is a mineral and weak acid with chemical formula H3PO4. In terms of production value, phosphoric acid is the inorganic acid produced and consumed in the highest amount. In terms of volume, it is the second-most produced and consumed inorganic acid, after sulfuric acid. The leading use of phosphoric acid is in the manufacture of phosphate chemicals. Phosphoric acid can be produced by two commercial methods: wet process and thermal process. Wet process phosphoric acid is used in fertilizer production. Thermal process phosphoric acid is of higher purity and it is used in the manufacture of high-grade chemicals, pharmaceuticals, detergents, food products, beverages and other non-fertilizer products. Read More

Industry Insights: The India polyurethane (PU) synthetic (artificial) leather market size was valued at $3.97 billion in 2016. It is witnessing augmented demand from applications in automotive and footwear industries. It is also used as an alternative to genuine leather, a factor that is significantly propelling its demand. Certain drawbacks of genuine leather, such as sticky feel and texture, are restraining its demand, paving the way for PU artificial leather. Surge in middle-class population, coupled with rising disposable income, is likely to present favorable opportunities for players in the local market. Another factor propelling its growth is low manufacturing cost as compared to natural leather. Read More

Isopropanol has gained immense significance as an effective solvent across various industrial sectors in light of its complete miscibility in most of the solvents including water. Isopropanol has been deemed as an accurate solvent for compounds such as natural & epoxy resins, alkaloids, ethyl cellulose, and essential oils. Fast evaporating property of isopropanol that leaves zero oil traces, and its lower toxicity, coupled with the estimated future phase out of ethanol will continue to augur well for its market growth in the near future. On account of its miscibility in non-polar solvents, isopropanol has gained traction as an essential prerequisite for cleaning pores present in electronic components. Read More

Carlsberg unveils ground-breaking innovations to reduce plastic waste

Carlsberg announced a series of ground-breaking innovations including its new Snap Pack, which is set to reduce plastic waste globally by more than 1200 tonnes a year – the equivalent to 60 million plastic bags. The Snap Pack replaces the plastic wrapping used around Carlsberg’s six packs with a pioneering technology that glues its cans together. A world first for the beer industry, it will reduce the amount of plastic used in traditional multi-packs by up to 76 percent. 3 years in the making, the Snap Pack is just one of Carlsberg’s sustainable packaging solutions that were announced today. Other improvements include 1. A switch to Cradle-to-Cradle Certified silver inks on its bottle labels to improve recyclability Read More

Dyes that are also of great interest for organic electronics have recently been prepared and crystallised at TU Wien. All that is required is just water, albeit under highly unusual conditions. They not only impress due to their radiant and intense colour, they also have an important technological significance: organic dyes are a class of materials with extremely special properties. From flat screens to electronic paper through to chip cards: in future, many technologies are likely to be based on organic molecules like these. Previously, such materials could only be prepared using complex synthesis methods that are incredibly harmful to the environment. However, researchers at TU Wien have now successfully synthesized several typical representatives of this materials class… Read More

A project developed through an MIT class has come up with a highly energy efficient design for a large community building that uses one of the world’s oldest construction materials. For this structure, called “the Longhouse,” massive timbers made of conventional lumber would be laminated together like a kind of supersized plywood. The design will be presented this October at the Maine Mass Timber Conference, which is dedicated to exploring new uses of this material, which can be used to build safe, sound high-rise buildings if building codes permit them. John Klein, a research scientist in MIT’s architecture department who taught a workshop called Mass Timber Design that came up with the new design, explained that “In North America, we have an abundance of forest resources, and a lot of it is overgrown. Read More

The overall objective of this study was to examine the ethanol yield potential of barley by experimenting with starch degrading enzymes and with starch degrading enzymes plus cellulose degrading enzymes on the overall fermentation yield and ethanol concentration. The project consisted of 2 different trials which included alpha-amylase and beta-glucosidase trial vs alpha-amylase, beta-glucosidase and cellulose trial. In Phase I, I studied the probability of producing ethanol from barley. In Phase II, I determined that by using the trehalase enzyme and using smaller dosages, I was able to produce the highest yield. In Phase III, I determined the best cook solid percentage and incubation temperature. Read More

Cementless fly ash binder makes concrete ‘green’

Rice University engineers have developed a composite binder made primarily of fly ash, a byproduct of coal-fired power plants, that can replace Portland cement in concrete. The material is cementless and environmentally friendly, according to Rice materials scientist Rouzbeh Shahsavari, who developed it with graduate student Sung Hoon Hwang. Fly ash binder does not require the high-temperature processing of Portland cement, yet tests showed it has the same compressive strength after seven days of curing. It also requires only a small fraction of the sodium-based activation chemicals used to harden Portland cement. The results are reported in the Journal of the American Ceramic Society. Read More

By Basab Saha:India is urbanising rapidly. Every year young people from the rural areas flock to cities in search of jobs and economic opportunities. As per the 2001 Census, India’s urban population will increase to 40.7 percent of the population to 600 million by 2030, as against 28 percent in 2001. With the growing number of people living in the cities, it is imperative that changes must be made to ensure that cities can occupy and sustain the increased number of residents. To tackle the issues that arise consequent to these large-scale migrations, we need cities to get ‘smarter.’ The Prime Minister’s vision of building 100 smart cities across the nation is revolutionary and challenging at the same time. Read More

By Renaat Demeulemeester: The difference between cast and calendered film is not only the result of the manufacturing process, but also the particular ingredients added to the raw materials during manufacturing. Most vinyl films are made from the same basic raw material – polyvinylchloride (PVC) polymer – which in its unadulterated state, is hard and inflexible. In order to give PVC the necessary flexibility, a key ingredient – a plasticizer – is added into the PVC resin. Calendered vinyl is produced in a continuous process that enables highvolume, low-cost manufacturing. On the calendered line the raw materials are mixed together, extruded, and then flattened out into a thin film by passing through various heated calendered rolls. Read More

A report by Euromonitor International released in May last year suggested that the market for deodorants in India grew by an enormous 177 percent between 2011 and 2016. In 2011, deodorant sales stood at Rs 1,130 crore; by 2016 it had almost tripled to Rs 3,130 crore. The annual growth rate of the industry is pegged at 18 percent and this rate is expected to continue for another four to five years according to experts. This isn’t surprising, given India’s long-standing fascination with products that please the olfactory senses. Since ancient times, the mastery of the science of perfumery was an essential part of the art of living in India. The indigenous Indian tradition of scent in India is evident as early as 3000 BC in the cities of the Indus Valley, where archaeologists have recently excavated distillation stills. Read More

Fluor uses IBM to deliver predictive analytics for megaprojects

Fluor Corporation and IBM announced the use of artificial intelligence-based systems to predict, monitor and measure the status of engineering, procurement, fabrication and construction (EPC) megaprojects from inception to completion. Fluor’s extensive engineering, fabrication, construction and deep supply chain expertise, coupled with artificial intelligence and analytic technologies from IBM Watson, forms the foundation for big data analytics and diagnostic systems that help predict critical project outcomes and provide early insights into the health of projects. Large capital projects, especially in the energy and chemicals, and mining and metals markets, are incredibly complex with enormous amounts of data, people and moving parts that are constantly changing and need to be understood to keep a project on schedule and budget. Read More

Royal DSM said that FormFutura will distribute its high-performance additive manufacturing filaments to customers in the fast-growing additive manufacturing/3D printing industry. The collaboration gives manufacturers, OEMs, designers and 3D printing service bureaus access to DSM additive manufacturing filaments for prototyping and industrial parts production. A 25-year pioneer in stereolithography, DSM started developing high-performance filaments based on its engineering plastics portfolio. Building on the company’s deep market-specific application understanding and expertise, DSM is further expanding its additive manufacturing activities into all polymer processing technology platforms – including experience from years of research in Selective Laser Sintering (SLS), Multi Jet Fusion, Ink Jet and Binder Jet processes. Read More

Lanxess has commissioned a new production line at its Mannheim site for the synthesis of dimercaptothiadiazole (DMTD) derivatives. These chemicals are added to lubricants as multifunctional additives. The production line, which started in May 2018, doubles the annual production capacity of these speciality additives. The investment volume is in the single-digit-million-euro range. “With this investment, we have responded to the increased customer demand for these specialities. The new plant will enable us to meet their requirements for high-quality lubricant additives, but also helps us acquire new customers, and further develop our own package solutions for a rapidly growing market,” said Dr Martin Sawe, head of the lubricant additives business line in Lanxess’s additives (ADD) business unit. Read More

International Flavors & Fragrances Inc (IFF) said that it has received antitrust clearance from all relevant antitrust authorities around the world to acquire Frutarom. All applicable antitrust and competition laws have been satisfied. “We are pleased that we’ve received our final antitrust clearance from Russia to proceed with our combination with Frutarom. Building on our strong momentum – having obtained Frutarom shareholder approval and receiving all relevant antitrust clearance – we continue to make significant progress in our integration planning. With great execution from our teams, we are on track to close the transaction in early October – ahead of our original expectation,” said Andreas Fibig, chairman and CEO, IFF. Read More

Indian govt bans Saridon, 327 other combination drugs

Indian govt bans Saridon, 327 other combination drugs

The health ministry of India has, with immediate effect, put a ban on manufacture, sale, and distribution of 328 fixed-dose combinations (FDCs) of drugs and restricted another six. This marks an end of the legal battle between the ministry and the manufacturers of these drugs. The ministry has been working since 2016 to ban these “irrational” and “unsafe” drugs. Among the roughly 6,000 brands estimated to be affected by the ban are popular drugs like the painkiller Saridon, the skin cream Panderm, combination diabetes drug Gluconorm, antibiotic Lupidicl, x and antibacterial Taxim AZ. The government had banned 344 FDCs on March 10, 2016, and later added five more to this list. Read More

Bayer Animal Health GmbH and NeuroCycle Therapeutics Inc (NCT) have signed a global license agreement to advance innovative allergy treatment options for companion animals. As part of the license agreement, Bayer will develop and commercialize novel compounds based on knowledge and intellectual property licensed and controlled by NCT. Pet ownership is growing around the world and with that customers’ requirement for more effective and convenient treatment options. “At Bayer, we are committed to help pet owners improve the health and well-being of their animals. We know that allergies are among the most important health and well-being concerns for pet owners and veterinarians. Read More

Clariant said that it was listed in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) 2018. This marks the 6th consecutive year that Clariant was recognized as one of the most sustainable chemical companies worldwide and is a testament to the company’s long-standing commitment to sustainability. The analysts at RobecoSAM confirmed Clariant as best in class in the categories of Materiality, Environmental Reporting, Water Related Risks and Human Capital Development and therefore across all three dimensions of the assessment. Clariant was ranked among the top companies in the chemical sector in both the DJSI Europe and the DJSI World. Clariant continuously steers its activities and product portfolio to create additional value for customers and contribute positively to global sustainable development. Read More

Fluor Corporation (FLR) said that the US Department of Energy (DOE) has exercised its option to extend its current management and operating contract of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) through 31 March 2024. The contract is currently being executed by Fluor Federal Petroleum Operations, LLC (FFPO), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fluor. Fluor will book the $2 billion contract extension value in the third quarter of 2018. FFPO began management and operations work on the SPR on April 1, 2014. As a result of this contract extension, Fluor will continue to support DOE in the execution of the SPR’s life extension engineering and construction efforts. The SPR is the world’s largest supply of emergency crude oil. Read More