Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Color Changing Plastic Films Indicate when Perishable Foods have Spoiled

Ability to sight spoiled perishable food items because the packaging has changed its color, or to spot a counterfeit dollar bill by stretching it to see if it changes hue, will soon be possible. These types of promising commercial applications are being developed with a new type of flexible plastic film developed by scientists at the University of Southampton in the United Kingdom and the Deutsches Kunststoff-Institut (DKI) in Darmstadt, Germany.

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Venezuela plans to natonalize 15 petrochemical companies

Venezuela's government plans to nationalize 15 petrochemical companies, along with six of their units. The left-wing government of President Hugo Chavez is targeting 15 joint venture companies, in 13 of which Pequiven features as a minority shareholder.

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Ashland to invest US$80 mln in expansion projects in China

Ashland Inc. plans to invest US$80 million in expansion projects for the company's operations in China. The projects consist of a new resin production plant and a technology and business services center.

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Reliance and GAIL to sign petrochemical MOU?

Reliance Industries Ltd. plans to sign an MOU with GAIL (India) Ltd. In an unprecedented move, RIL seems to be inducting a new partner in its core business: petrochemicals.

For more details please click on the following link

One accident related death at DuPont's Orange county plant

One man has been killed in an industrial accident at the DuPont Sabine River Works facility in Orange on July 24. The deceased was a contractor working for Turner Industries inside the ethylene unit. The accident occurred as workers were attempting to move a bundle of pipes with a crane when the load shifted and fell.

SolVin plans PVC expansion at Belgium

SolVin, the European vinyls joint venture between Solvay and BASF, is mulling PVC expansion. The expansion is being planned at Jemeppe (Belgium), as part of a strategy to derive sustainable and profitable growth from dynamic global vinyls arkets Capacity at Jemeppe is to be raised by 75,000 tpa to 475,000 tpa of PVC by 2009. This expansion plan is pending relevant regulatory clearance.

SolVin has successfully reorganized its operations in Europe, comprising of closure of its Ludwigshafen plant in 2006.

Polystyrene Market Update in North America, July 23, 2007

The Polystyrene market held mostly steady this week. We saw several good offgrade railcars for each HIPS and GPPS in the lower $.70s/lb. There were a few Generic Prime railcars offered, priced a couple cents higher. A few resellers also had warehoused resin looking for a home. We also came across surplus EPS, including loads of T, B and C beads.

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Polypropylene Market Update in North America, July 23, 2007

The spot Polypropylene market was mostly steady with a firm undertone this past week. We had a good flow of offgrade railcars and those prices edged higher. Domestic Generic Prime cars were available in the low $.60s/lb.

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Polyethylene Market Update in North America, July 23, 2007

The spot Polyethylene market was very busy this week. It began with some export demand that was held over the weekend, and on Monday a number of the Polyethylene orders were filled about $.015-.02/lb higher than late June prices.

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Polymer Market Update in North America, July 23, 2007

It was a busy week for the spot resin markets. Trading activity has unfolded in much of the way that we anticipated it would in July. After a slow holiday week started this 3rd quarter off with a whimper, large volumes of Polyethylene offers, priced the full $.05/lb higher, began to show during the 2nd week of the month.

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Williams to supply feedstock to Nova's Joffre plant

Williams Cos. in Redwater, near Edmonton; is to supply petrochemical feedstock to Nova's Joffre, Alberta plant. Modifications will be introduced by Williams in its oil sands off-gas liquids fractionation facility in Redwater, to extract ethane and ethylene from gases derived from processing oilsands crudes.

For more details please click on the following link

Petrochemicals to be included in India-GCC FTA likely to be finalized by 2008

India and the Gulf Cooperation Council are working to finalise the Free Trade Agreement by year end, to further boost bilateral trade ties. Among the sectors likely to be included are manufacturing, services, education, training, infrastructure projects, aluminum, petrochemicals, information technology, tourism and healthcare.

Punj Lloyd JV awarded contract by Saudi Kayan Petrochemical

Dayim Punj Lloyd Construction Contracting Co. Ltd. has won a US$79 mln contract from Saudi Kayan Petrochemical Company.

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EU sets inquiry deadline for Ineos acquisition of Norsk

The European Commission has set August 24th as the deadline for its inquiry into British chemical company Ineos' proposed acquisition of Norsk Hydro ASA's petrochemicals business Kerling ASA.

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Thai Aromatics board backs merger with Rayong

The board of directors of Thai Aromatics (ATC), Thailand's largest aromatic petrochemical manufacturer, has approved a plan to merge with small refiner Rayong Refinery.

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Flame retardant Phosphorous compounds for plastics and polyurethanes

Lanxess has presented its portfolio of effective flame retardant phosphorous compounds for plastics and polyurethanes. The flame retardants come in three product lines Levagard, Disflamoll and Bayfomox and offer significant advantages and excellent flame retardance, even in complex applications. They include new grades for use in low-fogging flexible foams for the automotive industry.

For more details please click on the following link

Acquisition by Basell will not immediately effect Lyondell's Tuscola plant

Basell, owned by Access Industries, a U.S. based industrial group, has agreed to acquire Lyondell for US$48 per share in an all-cash transaction.

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Market for Biodegradable Polymers to grow by 7%

The market for biodegradable polymers is estimated to grow to about 392 million pounds by 2013, according to a study by Global Industry Analysts, Inc. The 7% pa growth will be propelled by potential demand from the chemical, agricultural and plastic sectors as well as environmental concerns.

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New BASF polymers plant in Wyandotte

A new BASF Corporation facility has commenced construction in Wyandotte to house the R&D, administrative and manufacturing operations of recently acquired Johnson Polymer. BASF is investing up to US$147 million to relocate the operations from Wisconsin to Michigan, in line with the company's competitive, pro-business environment.

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Oil prices dip to US$75.43 a barrel

Oil prices dipped as Nigeria resumed exports from an oil facility in Angola over the weekend and amid expectations of an easing of U.S. gasoline demand as peak of the Northern Hemisphere summer driving season passes.

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Monday, July 30, 2007

New plastic membrane boosts fuel cell efficiency

Kyoto University chemical engineering professor Masahiro Ohshima and Mitsubishi Plastics Inc. have developed plastic sheets to make fuel cells more efficient. The duo has invented a way to manufacture plastic sheets with a number of tiny, uniformly sized holes.

For more details please click on the following link

Aker Kvaerner awarded contract for PP and PE plants in China

Aker Kvaerner has been awarded a contract by China's ShenHua Baotou Coal Chemicals for a new polypropylene (PP) and polyethylene (PE) facility at its coal chemical complex at Baotou in Inner Mongolia. Aker Kvaerner will provide the basic engineering design, technical advisory services, and offshore equipment procurement service.

ShenHua Baotou is part of ShenHua Group Corporation, the biggest coal enterprise group in China and one of the largest coal enterprises in the world.

Sinopec Yangzi plans expansion to become China's largest paraxylene (PX) producer

Sinopec Yangzi Petrochemical Co, a unit of China Petroleum & Chemical Corp (Sinopec), has planned expansion at its 800,000 tpa plant to become China's largest paraxylene (PX) producer. The company plans to boost its annual paraxylene capacity to 1.2 mln tons in 2010 at its plant located in Nanjing in eastern China's Jiangsu province.

Equistar to spend US$125 mln on pollution controls and clean-up at seven petrochemica...

Equistar Chemicals LP is to spend over US$125 mln on pollution controls and clean-up at the plants in Texas, Illinois, Iowa and Louisiana. The plants include Morris, Ill.; Clinton, Iowa; an inactive plant in Lake Charles, La.; and Channelview, Chocolate Bayou, Corpus Christi and La Porte, Texas.

For more details please click on the following link

HPCL and ONGC sign agreement for infrastructure sharing

Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) and Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) have signed a wide-ranging cooperation agreement. The agreement will assure domestic oil supplies to HPCL from ONGC and its subsidiary MRPL.

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A new additive adds strength to polylactic acid

A new additive that broadens the usability of polylactic (PLA) has been introduced by Rohm and Haas. The new additive Paraloid BPM-500, uses dispersible nanoparticles that do not scatter light, and allows for the production of PLA packaging material that exhibits less than 10% haze at 5% loading. Visual transparency is maintained along with stronger impact and tear-resistance. Paraloid BPM-500 complies with food contact requirements in Europe and with room temperature food contact requirements in the US.

Dow Chemical plans JV in Brazil to make PE from sugarcane

Dow Chemical Co plans a joint venture with ethanol producer Crystalsev to manufacture polyethylene from sugar cane. Dow and its Brazilian partner plans to design and build a manufacturing facility in Brazil that will use ethanol derived from sugar cane to produce ethylene. Production is slated for commencement in 2011. The partners have launched a feasibility study for the project, scheduled for completion in about one years' time.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

KRAIBURG TPE expands US production capacities

KRAIBURG TPE GmbH & Co. KG has expanded its production capacities in the USA. A new production machine went into service at the Duluth, Georgia plant operated by the world's leading manufacturer of thermosplastic elastomer compounds based on hydrogenated styrene block copolymers (HSBC).

For more details please click on the following link

Texas Petrochemicals commissions new facility

Texas Petrochemicals, Inc (TPC), a leading petrochemical company specializing in the production of valued added products derived from C4 and C3 hydrocarbons has started the commissioning of its new nonene and propylene tetramer facility in Baytown with start-up and initial plant operations expected to begin by the end of July.

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Hexion increases bid for Huntsman by additional 75 cents

Hexion Specialty Chemicals, owned by private equity firm Apollo Management, has increased its bid for Huntsman Corporation by adding 75 cents per share, hiking its offer from US$27.25 per share to US$28.00. Earlier last week, Hexion overtook the US$25.25 per-share bid made by polyolefins major Basell.

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Solvay introduced a new engineered polyolefin material

Solvay Engineered Polymers Inc., has introduced a new engineered polyolefin material in its SEQUEL(R) 1800 series of products. The new SEQUEL 1828 polyolefin exhibits a coefficient of linear thermal expansion (CLTE) that is the lowest of any material the company has yet developed.

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Hydro Polymers shuts down PVC reactor in UK

A PVC reactor at the UK site of Norway based Hydro Polymers near Newton Aycliffe was shut down automatically following a power cut on 3 July 2007. Declaration of Force Majeure on PVC supplies by the company will not be necessary as inventories seem sufficient to supply customers until the plant restart planned on 13 July.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

LLDPE futures likely to be traded from August at Dalian Commodity Exchange

LLDPE (Line Low Density Polyethylene) futures are likely to be traded from August at Dalian Commodity Exchange (DCE), one of China's three futures exchanges, pending final approval from the China Securities Regulatory Commission.

For more details please click on the following link

Friday, July 06, 2007

New Thermoplastic Elastomers for Breathable Membranes

Skymark Performance Films Limited (Scunthorpe, U.K.), has employed Arnitel® VT thermoplastic ether ester block copolymer elastomer (TEE-E) film technology materials from DSM Engineering Plastics, in Skymark's breathable SKYAIR® and SKYAIR® XT membranes.

For more details please click on the following link

GE Plastics' Materials for Auto Body Panels

GE Plastics has announced the company's newest products to join the GE ecomagination* portfolio, offering the environmental and economic advantages of replacing traditional steel with Noryl GTX* resins in automotive body panels.

For more details please click on the following link

Monday, July 02, 2007

Mittal group signs MOU for US$1.5 bln investment in petrochem projects in Bangladesh

Companies from the Mittal group, a business conglomerate with extensive interests in India and overseas, plans to invest US$2.9 bln in Bangladesh.

For more details please click on the following link