Need for Chemical Companies to go Digital

Need for Chemical Companies to go Digital

The chemical industry is vast with a plethora of industries that produce a wide range of products across many different sections. In the past, large chemical companies particularly the producers had monopoly over the market. These large companies focused on operational efficiency over adaptability and flexibility. Today, niche players dominate the market with their focus on consumer demand. These players have elicited incumbents to evolve through adoption of digital technology at the business core and at the same time manufacture small batches to cater to individual customer needs, selling services, experiences and outcomes.

A breakthrough by chemists at the University of Chicago may one day open possibilities for making chemicals from plants rather than oil, by creating a new method to crack certain tough carbon-to-carbon bonds. A great number of chemicals in the natural and industrial world have backbones made of carbon-on-carbon bonds. These are regularly carved up during processes to make new useful molecules. But a particular subset of these bonds is very stable—and thus difficult to crack open. Chemists would like to discover new ways to cut and rearrange such bonds; a library of such knowledge is key to finding valuable new chemicals or more efficient or greener ways to make known ones. Read More

Songwon has developed and launched a new antioxidant, Songnox 5057. Songnox 5057 complements Songwon’s already broad range of aminic, phenolic, phosphite and thioester antioxidants. This new liquid butylated octylated aminic antioxidant is suitable for various substrates, including polyols. It is designed for flexible polyurethane slabstock foams, elastomers and hot melt adhesives. Foams are used in numerous different industries ranging from furniture and bedding to automotive components and sports applications. Applied in combination with hindered phenols such as Songnox 1135 or Songnox 1076, Songnox 5057 protects polyols against degradation during storage and transportation. Read More

Compass Minerals International Inc said that Fran Malecha has agreed to step down from his position as president and CEO, effective immediately. Dick Grant, lead independent director, will serve as chairman of the board and interim CEO until a permanent CEO is named. “Over the last several years, we have made progress toward building a balanced company for the future. The board remains committed to achieving best-in-class operational efficiency in our Salt business to maximize its cash generating capabilities and investing in our higher-growth, global Plant Nutrition business. We are now moving forward with a keen focus on execution in order to ensure we can drive value from these investments and deliver sustainable, long-term value creation for our shareholders,” said Dick Grant, chairman and interim CEO. Read More


Researchers find cheaper, less energy-intensive way to purify ethylene

Researchers at The University of Texas at Arlington have filed a provisional patent application on a new copper compound that can be used to purify ethylene. The ethylene is used as a raw material in the production of plastics such as polyethylene or PVC, as well as other industrial compounds. Ethylene is produced from crude oil but is usually obtained as a mixture containing ethane. Manufacturing processes using ethylene usually require pure, or 99.9 percent, ethylene feed-stock. “Existing technologies to separate ethylene and ethane use enormous amounts of energy and require high levels of capital investment. Read More

Crude oil and natural gas production has increased in US, despite the decline in number of wells, according to a report by Energy Information Administration. A report stated that how the daily production rates of individual wells contributed to US total crude oil and natural gas production in 2017. The total number of wells producing crude oil and natural gas in the United States fell to 991,000 in 2017, down from a peak of 1,039,000 wells in 2014. This recent decline in the number of wells reflects advances in technology and drilling techniques. Wells classified as nonhorizontal in the report—most of which are vertical wells—have decreased from 940,000 in 2014 to 864,000 in 2017. Read More

Wanhua Chemical Group has decided to develop a new $1.25 billion American chemical manufacturing complex in Convent, Louisiana. The new methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI) plant has a capacity of 400 kilotons per year. This project will generate 1,000 construction jobs at peak activity, and create 1,230 new direct and indirect jobs. The North American polyurethane market has witnessed continuous growth in recent years. Once operating at full capacity, the new facility will greatly enhance Wanhua’s supply capability and stability of MDI in North America, as well as broaden the product portfolio. The Louisiana project represents Wanhua’s commitment to bring manufacturing to the US and to enable the company to better serve the customers. Read More

Ineos Enterprises has agreed to acquire the entire composites business from Ashland Global Holdings Inc for $1.1 billion. The businesses included in the transaction have combined sales of more than $1.1 billion per year. They employ 1,300 employees across 20 sites in Europe, North and South America, Asia and Middle East. The deal is expected to complete in the first half of 2019. Ashland’s composites business is a global leader in unsaturated polyester resins, vinyl ester resins and gel coats. In addition to its wide range of gelcoats, the business also provides corrosion-resistant fiberglass reinforced plastic (FRP) which provide exceptional durability, superior heat resistance, low maintenance and high performance for challenging environments. Read More

Trends in the Chemical Industry

Trends in the Chemical Industry

The chemical industry is very dynamic which will continue to change rapidly in the coming years. Companies related to the chemical industry must adapt swiftly to overcome challenges, maintain a competitive edge and grasp new market opportunities. The convergence of new trends is creating a perfect outburst for the chemical industry, challenging the previous generation’s strategies of companies. In chemical business nowadays, factors such as intellectual property, customer and feedstock proximity and technology know-how no longer assure a sustainable competitive advantage. Read More

Ajinomoto Co Inc said that it is constructing a new production line at its Tokai Plant for amino acid-based surfactants (flakes), mainstay products of its personal care ingredients businesses The operation will start in December 2018. As a result, Ajinomoto’s overall production capacity for flakes will increase approximately 70 percent, enabling it to meet rapidly growing demand for amino acid-based surfactants and to strengthen its supply system. Currently, Ajinomoto produces and globally supplies a diverse range of amino acid-based surfactants, including glycine-derived Amilite and glutamic acid-derived Amisoft, in the three forms of liquid, powder and flakes. Read More

Buckman has selected Univar Inc to serve as its distributor in the lubricant and metalworking markets. Products include its full range of microbicides, deposit control products, dispersing agents and high-performance additives in US and Canada.  Buckman selected Univar due to its large-scale distribution capabilities, leading supply chain network and innovative digital technologies. Buckman offers top quality, effectiveness and value along with an industry-leading portfolio of microbicides, deposit control and dispersing agents, emulsion breakers, enzymatic solutions, heavy metal precipitants, and defoamers. Read More

The Linde Group has been awarded a contract from Inner Mongolia Huineng Coal Chemical Co Ltd to supply a mid-scale LNG plant near Beinichuan in Inner Mongolia, China. This will be Linde’s seventh and largest LNG plant to date in China and is in response to growing demand from customers in China. Linde’s Engineering division will be responsible for engineering, procurement and site services for the LNG plant with a nameplate capacity of 750,000 tons of liquefied natural gas per annum. The plant’s technology is based on Linde’s proprietary LIMUM(R) process, a multi-stage mixed refrigerant process that provides best-in-class energy efficiency, and proprietary core cryogenic heat exchangers. Read More

E-mobility: Exploring electric vehicles’ potential for chemical manufacturers

Growing prices of conventional fuel and environmental impact of petroleum-based transport is encouraging people to search for low-cost mobility alternatives. Prominently people are exploring the use of electric vehicles (EVs). Electric Vehicles vary from fossil fuel-powered vehicles. The electricity consumed can be generated from a wide range of sources, including fossil fuels, nuclear power and renewable sources such as tidal power, solar power and wind power or any combination of those. The carbon footprint and other emissions of electric vehicles are much lesser than the diesel-powered vehicles. Most electric vehicles use lithium-ion batteries (Li-Ions or LIBs). Read More

A cost-effective and eco-friendly method of removing paan stains from roads, railway stations and monuments recently won a team of eight girls from Ramnarain Ruia College, Matunga, recognition on an international platform. The team not only won a gold medal at the Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) 2018 held in Boston, US, but was also the only undergraduate college among the 300 global teams to get a prize for best integrated human practices. Inspired by the Swacch Bharat Abhiyaan, the students set out to find an environment-friendly solution to wipe off stubborn paan stains from public spaces. Read More

Hexaflex has developed a patented padding technology based on hexagonal-pyramidal shapes moulded with thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) from Kraiburg TPE. The TPE compound from Kraiburg TPE provides the flexibility, lightweight and full articulation characteristics of the modular system that lends itself to a myriad of shock and vibration absorbing applications. In a first application, the creative technology is used for a dorsal protection product covered with high-strength aromatic polyamide stretch fabric for bikers and motorcyclists. The lightweight material combination acts as a second skin, and the Hexaflex padding with its interlocking shapes in Thermolast K… Read More

Floor Cleaner: Types and Chemistry

Our floors are designed to withstand a variety of elements from furniture movement, pet movement, heavy foot traffic to kids’ activities. Moreover, we invest a small fortune on floors during the interior work of our homes. Therefore, we would want to take good care of them so that they last for a long time. Floor management is a broad affair which is employed not only at our homes, but also in industries, institutions and commercial places. Floors require daily cleaning due the quick buildup of grime, dirt, spills, mud and more. They must be kept clean so that they are aesthetic and at the same time free from the accumulation and spread of germs and debris through the rest of the place. Read More

Harley-Davidson’s first e-motorcycle to launch in 2019

Harley-Davidson has unveiled the production version of its first electric motorcycle, the Harley-Davidson LiveWire. The bike is based on the Project LiveWire concept, which Harley-Davidson unveiled back in 2014, with a test tour around the world. The bike is scheduled to arrive next year, with pricing and pre-ordering details to be made available in January 2019. Some features of the bike include seven riding modes that can be adjusted via the Showa suspension and electric drivetrain to account for power, range, and regenerative braking preferences. Read More

Last year, Royal Enfield confirmed its plans for the development of electric vehicles for the Indian auto industry.  The vehicles are scheduled to launch in 2020 and is expected to cost Rs 4 Lakhs to Rs 5 Lakhs, due to the growing popularity of EVs. The company said that its Royal Enfield Electric Bike is in compliant with Indian BS-VI emission norms. The concept of EVs is still under development in India. Electric scooters have started coming to India and the Electric cars are also expected to launch in India by 2020. However, the concept of an electric bike is still unheard. Read More

Ford Smart Mobility LLC, a subsidiary of Ford Motor Company has acquired Spin, a dockless electric scooter sharing company based in San Francisco. This deal makes Ford, the first auto manufacturers to enter the electric scooter market. Spin has operations in 13 cities and campuses across US. The number of mobility options available to people has risen dramatically in recent years. In some situations, people use multiple forms of transportation during a single trip. The fast-paced, often experimental mobility sector requires businesses to keep up with agile and adaptable customers. At Ford, the products and services we offer need to reflect these changes, said the company. Read More

Praxair Inc has signed a long-term contract to supply oxygen to Fulcrum BioEnergy’s Sierra BioFuels plant in Storey County, Nevada. Praxair will build two vacuum pressure swing adsorption (VPSA) plants at the facility, which is under construction and expected to start up operations in early 2020. The Sierra BioFuels plant will employ Praxair’s proprietary HOB technology for increasing syngas yield from the gasification process. HOB technology enables rapid partial oxidation of remaining hydrocarbons and tars in the produced syngas without the need for a catalyst or steam injection. Read More

Indian Peroxide Ltd launches new H2O2 plant in Gujarat

Indian Peroxide Limited (IPL), one of India’s major manufacturers and suppliers of speciality chemicals, has launched its new hydrogen peroxide plant complex in Gujarat, India. The state-of-the-art manufacturing facility produces industrial grade, premium quality and environmentally friendly hydrogen peroxide (H2O2). With best-in-class production process, IPL offers hydrogen peroxide in 35 percent, 50 percent and 60 percent concentration. Along with new plant complex, IPL plans to invest Rs. 750 Cr in next 3-5 years including capacity expansion for other chemical units leveraging synergy with the new H2O2 plant. Read More

Orion Engineered Carbons SA has acquired SN2A, a manufacturer of acetylene carbon black from LyondellBasell. The transaction closed on October 31, 2018. Societe du Noir d’Acetylene de l’Aubette, SAS (SN2A) was founded in 1987 and is headquartered at Berre l’Etang, France. Acetylene black is an ultra-pure premium speciality carbon black distinguished by its high electrical and thermal conductivity. Lithium-ion batteries and high-end electrical cables are key applications for this material. “SN2A brings us a skilled team, proven technology and an operating plant. Read More

BASF said that it will present the latest solutions to meet the demands of the personal care market. BASF Care Creations will showcase two new products that answer the needs of today’s environmentally conscious consumers, Readily biodegradable-wax-based opacifier dispersion and exfoliating beads. Euperlan OP White is a wax based, readily biodegradable and cold processable opacifier dispersion with a superior white appearance for surfactant formulations. The product meets today’s demand for ecological friendly ingredients and its unique properties make it particularly suitable for eco-label conforming skin and hair cleansing formulations. Read More

Lonza has entered into a definitive agreement with Platinum Equity to sell its water care business and operations for $630 million. The agreement is expected to close in the first quarter of 2019. Headquartered in Alpharetta, US, water care has six manufacturing facilities in key regions, including North America, South America, EMEA and South Africa, with sales locations in all regions globally and with approximately 1,200 employees. The business is a leading provider of innovative water treatment solutions and a top global consumer brand in residential pool care and key positions in high-growth industrial and municipal water care markets. Read More

New polypropylene resin for lightweight breathable nonwoven fabrics

SABIC is all set to unveil an innovative new polypropylene (PP) resin product engineered to deliver enhanced properties in melt-blown fibers for nonwoven fabrics, at the RISI Asia Pacific hygiene products symposium. The new product, designated SABIC® PP 514M12, can serve a wide range of potential end-uses in personal hygiene applications and other market segments. It is the first grade of a new family of high-flow resin compounds which SABIC started to develop only two years ago, and is expected to be commercially available by end of 2018. Read More

Digitalization is taking over most of the spheres of work. In the race to be a front-runner, even the healthcare segment is opening up its doors and embracing some of the latest, cutting-edge techniques. This adoption of technology and gadgets is helping the healthcare sector move from a mode of ‘treating a disease’ to the mode of ‘disease prediction & prevention.’ From a remote location, doctors and nurses can diagnose issues and track the daily health of patients. And as technology is progressing it is highly possible that your next surgeon could be a skilled, complex, experienced robot. Along with technology, even the process of interaction is moving online. Read More

By Ken Richards: Cellulosic sugars are a major feedstock in the production of bio-based alternatives to fossil-based materials. Leaf Resources, a global leader empowering the growth of green chemistry, has developed a breakthrough technology to enable the cost-effective production of renewable chemicals from biomass. By significantly reducing the operating costs of biomass conversion, the company’s GlycellTM process could reshape the economics of replacing petroleum in thousands of everyday products. A sustainable bio-based economy needs alternatives to non-renewable feedstock’s. Read More

By Alistair Little: Over the past 10 years the use of LEDs for home and commercial lighting has increased exponentially, with a wide range of applications and specialist features that incandescent and fluorescent lighting systems simply cannot meet. The improvements in the efficiency of the LED over the past few years has also lead to a considerable improvement in the lifespan of the component, which is now substantially greater than both the traditional incandescent and fluorescent lighting technologies. This has meant that for a number of applications, LED lighting is now regarded as very low or even maintenance free, and is widely used for road, traffic and vehicle lighting. Read More