Evonik Industries (Essen, Germany) plans to expand capacities for the specialty polymer polyamide 12. First, the company is significantly expanding its existing plant in Marl, Germany; second, the executive board has approved preliminary and basic planning for a large new polyamide 12 production facility in Asia. The location in Asia has not yet been identified but Evonik does already operate an acrylic plant in Shanghai, China.
The 5,000-tonnes/year expansion at Marl is expected to start operating in 2012. The Asian facility, which will provide a very significant expansion of 20,000 tonnes/tear, is scheduled for completion within three years.
Dahai Yu, a member of Evonik's Executive Board with responsibility for the Specialty Materials segment, said: "With the significant capacity expansion proposed, we plan to consolidate our leading position in polyamide 12 for the long term. We're relying here on growth in the established markets as well as in emerging regions like Asia." Polyamide 12 is used in innovative and high-quality products in the automotive sector and in electricals and electronics, household gadgets, and sports equipment as well as in industry. And, in conjunction with customers, Evonik has developed new applications in oil and gas production and gas distribution.
"As the sole integrated producer of polyamide 12, Evonik has at its disposal an outstanding and competitive technology platform," added Gregor Hetzke, Head of the Performance Polymers Business Unit. Evonik produces polyamide 12 starting from butadiene; this is converted through various intermediate steps to the monomer laurolactam, which polymerizes to polyamide 12.
This is then processed further by the company into compounds. Evonik markets polyamide 12 as the structural material Vestamid and the coating powder Vestosint.-mpweditorial[email protected]