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

Covestro develops new super-plastic with positive eco-balance


Covestro AG and its partners have developed a high-performance thermoplastic (HPT) that could be used in many industries in the future. This would significantly increase the sustainability and performance of products in areas such as aviation, automotive and health. The challenge now is to enable the continuous production of the new plastic on a large scale. This is the goal of a research project coordinated by Covestro and funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). HPT is a high-performance plastic that can be processed by injection moulding and uniquely combines numerous good properties. It is stable with high hardness and is also resistant to heat and many solvents. Test batches of the new material are already being produced. Read More

Invista plans to add 40,000 tons of nylon 6,6 polymer capacity at its current 150,000-ton polymer plant at the Shanghai Chemical Industry Park (SCIP). Construction is targeted for mid-2019 and production would begin in 2020. This project aligns with Invista’s other recent announcements regarding additional capacity in the nylon 6,6 value chain: 1. New adiponitrile (ADN) plant announced for China by 2023. 2. Additional ADN capacity resulting from retrofits of Invista’s latest ADN technology at Butachimie, Invista’s joint venture with Solvay in France in 2019; and at Invista’s Victoria, Texas, site, targeted for 2020 3. ADN production records at Invista’s Orange, Texas, site. Invista also has a 215,000-ton hexamethylenediamine (HMD) plant at SCIP. Read More

Oil prices rose more than 2 percent on Tuesday as US sanctions squeezed Iranian crude exports and after US crude oil production in 2019 was forecast to grow at a slower rate than previously expected, prompting supply concerns. Since spring when the Trump Administration said it would impose sanctions on Iran, crude traders have priced in a risk premium reflecting the supply shortages that may occur when exports from the third-largest OPEC member are cut. As the Nov. 4 date for imposing sanctions draws nearer, the premium has increased. Brent crude futures rose $1.69, or 2.2 percent, to settle at $79.06 a barrel. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude settled $1.71, or 2.5 percent, higher at $69.25 a barrel. Read More

RPM International Inc (RPM) said that it has acquired Nudura Corporation, the leading manufacturer and distributor of insulated concrete forms (ICF) in North America. Based in Ontario, Canada, Nudura has annual net sales in excess of $40 million. Nudura provides four series of ICF wall systems, consisting of foam boards made from expanded polystyrene (EPS) and integral hinged plastic webs that hold both sides of the boards together. Concrete is then poured into the form to make an insulated concrete wall system. Nudura also offers a range of complementary building envelope products. A niche and emerging product in the building materials industry, ICFs provide enhanced energy efficiency and superior insulation, as well as greater resistance to fire, hurricanes, earthquakes and flooding, compared to traditional construction methods. Read More

Chemists make historic fluorine discovery


A groundbreaking discovery by chemists at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) will have a significant impact on how pharmaceutical companies develop new drug treatments. The breakthrough involves fluorine, which forms the second strongest carbon bond (C-F) known to science, after the carbon-silicon (C-S) bond. Fluorine is one of the most fundamental elements of life. In its fluoride form, it’s a mineral with anti-acid properties used in toothpaste and drinking water to prevent dental cavities. This small, non-toxic element is also widely used by medicinal chemists in cancer treatment, antibiotics, anti-depressants, steroids and other drugs. Fluorine is prevalent in modern drugs because it stabilizes drugs and improves their biological activity. Read More

AkzoNobel Specialty Chemicals and partner firm Photanol BV are going to build a demonstration plant for a groundbreaking technology to produce chemicals from sunlight. The plant will be built at AkzoNobel’s site in Delfzijl, the Netherlands. The companies formed a partnership in 2014 to jointly work on a technology using cyanobacteria that mimics the way plants use photosynthesis to produce chemical building blocks such as organic acids from carbon dioxide (CO2). These have applications in biodegradable plastics, personal care products and as intermediates for the chemical industry. Photanol has closed a financing round with a group of Dutch investment firms that will allow the construction of the unit to go ahead; completion is expected in 2020. Read More

Grauer and Weil (India) Ltd or Growel said that it has showcased a host of stellar products mostly related to the automotive industry, recently at an event in Chennai, India. Among the products were zinc and zinc alloys which included zinc and zinc-nickel plated components that meet the stringent automotive specifications of OEMs like Hyundai, Ford, BMW, Maruti, TATA, Volkswagen, Nissan, Renault, Mahindra, TAFE and others. Other products were Trivalent passivated components in different shades like blue, yellow and black, Geomet-coated fasteners and other parts related to Bharat Benz, Hyundai and other industries like windmills etc. Plating on plastic components of the car and motor cycle industry, Electroless nickel mostly related to oil drilling and pipelines, Hard chrome related to earth moving equipment… Read More

BASF SE has started a stepwise capacity increase of its production plant for alkoxylation – a downstream technology of ethylene oxide production – in Antwerp, Belgium. The first additional capacities will be available from as early as the 3rd quarter of 2018. Alkoxylation is used for example in the manufacture of surfactants for the home care industry and in industrial and institutional cleaning applications. BASF customers use surfactants in the formulation of laundry detergents, surface cleaners and dishwasher detergents, for instance. Alkoxylates are also used in technical applications for industrial solutions.Examples include raw materials for the manufacture of plasticizers, emulsifiers for emulsion polymerization, crop protection additives, and polyurethane foams for the rubber industry. Read More

Clariant to present new colour solutions for aluminium finishing


Clariant International Ltd to present its latest high-durability, sustainable colour solutions for aluminium finishing. A new magenta shade with a unique level of light and weather fastness that is perfect for adding long-lasting vibrancy to indoor and outdoor applications. Adding to its appeal, the single dye formulation has a heavy metal-free dye structure, is non-bleeding and easy to handle. It shows good dye bath stability and enables a stable dyeing process. Clariant will be joined by Omya (Schweiz) AG, the exclusive distribution partner for its aluminium finishing portfolio in Europe, North Africa and the Middle East, to demonstrate the product enhancing capabilities offered by its complete portfolio of Swiss-engineered colourants, process chemicals and special printing inks for sub-eloxal printing. Read More

Quaker Chemical Corporation to present informative, technical solutions for the metalworking industry. As the automotive industry continues to strive for improved fuel economy and reduced emissions, new materials and processes are being utilized to achieve vehicle weight reduction, increased engine performance, and to maintain or increase the overall performance and safety of the vehicle. The current focus towards lightweight engine components is leading to the use of highly engineered materials that introduces new machining challenges. To meet these challenges, Quaker will be highlighting field-proven, advanced product technology with the QUAKERCOOL 7450, 5035, and 8013 metal removal fluids: Read More

Enterprise Products Partners LP (EPD) has begun construction of a new natural gas liquids (NGL) fractionator adjacent to its Mont Belvieu, Texas complex. The new unit will have a nameplate capacity of 150,000 barrels per day (bpd). Giving Enterprise 905,000 bpd of fractionation capability in the Mont Belvieu area, and approximately 1.4 million bpd companywide. The fractionator is scheduled to begin service in the first quarter of 2020. “The addition of our newest fractionator will facilitate continued NGL production growth, including from the Permian Basin where NGL volumes are expected to more than double over the next four years. This new fractionator will supply NGL products for the expanding petrochemical industry on the US Gulf Coast as well as growing global demand for NGLs,” said A J Jim Teague, CEO of Enterprise’s general partner. Read More

McDermott International Inc (MDR) has successfully completed the contract for phase two of the Greater Western Flank (GWF) project. The contract was awarded by Woodside Energy Ltd in January 2016. McDermott was responsible for the procurement, fabrication, installation and testing of a series of pipeline buckle initiators, pipeline end terminations and foundation mudmats, in-line tee structures and approximately 21 miles (35 kilometers) of a 16-inch (40 centimeters) corrosion resistant alloy (CRA) pipeline extending from the existing Goodwyn A Platform to the Lady Nora and Pemberton field manifold locations. McDermott deployed two of its speciality vessels to complete the installation phase, namely DLV 2000 for the pipelay campaign and the Lay Vessel 108 for the pre-lay and post-lay campaign. Read More

Scientists pioneer a new way to turn sunlight into fuel


The quest to find new ways to harness solar power has taken a step forward after researchers successfully split water into hydrogen and oxygen by altering the photosynthetic machinery in plants. Photosynthesis is the process plants use to convert sunlight into energy. Oxygen is produced as a by-product of photosynthesis when the water absorbed by plants is ‘split’. It is one of the most important reactions on the planet because it is the source of nearly all of the world’s oxygen. Hydrogen which is produced when the water is split could potentially be a green and unlimited source of renewable energy. A new study, led by academics at the University of Cambridge, used semi-artificial photosynthesis to explore new ways to produce and store solar energy. Read More

Honeywell has acquired Ortloff Engineers Ltd, a privately held licensor and industry-leading developer of specialized technologies that drive high returns in natural gas processing and sulfur recovery. Ortloff will become part of Honeywell UOP’s gas processing and hydrogen business, bringing the industry’s most advanced expertise in the recovery of high-value natural gas liquids (NGLs) from natural gas streams. Ortloff technologies are specialized to maximize gas separation, providing customers with high operational flexibility and greater returns on their plant investments. Ortloff also specializes in unique technologies for removing sulfur from refinery feedstocks, ensuring greater plant reliability and operability over the refinery lifecycle. Read More

BASF SE plans to increase the production capacity of 1,6-Hexanediol (HDO) at its Ludwigshafen Verbund site by more than 50 percent. After the start-up in 2021, BASF’s global annual nameplate capacity of HDO will be more than 70,000 metric tons per year at its production facilities in Ludwigshafen, Germany and Freeport, Texas, US. HDO adds value in many applications by giving hydrolysis resistance, flexibility, adhesion and weatherability to the end-products. Due to its superior performance compared to other materials, BASF’s customers use the intermediate to formulate high quality industrial, automotive, wood or leather coatings, polyurethane plastics, adhesives and cosmetics. Read More

Jacketed Ball Valves largely use to sustain process media temperature during process to keep fluids at a lower viscosity to operate valve smoothly. Each Jacketed Ball Valve body construction is replaced by adding minimum one size higher flanges to achieve proper tighten space of bolt and nut. The company manufactures jacketed ball valve in sizes from DN15 x DN 40 (1/2″ X 1-1/2″) to DN150 x DN250 (6″ x10″). The model FJK80/81 series full jacketed ball valves are manufactured with various material grade of body, jacket and seats to suit various viscous services. Read More