W. R. Grace and Milliken combine catalyst and additive technologies

W. R. Grace & Co. and Milliken & Co. have teamed up to offer polypropylene (PP) manufacturers new and differentiated resin portfolios featuring enhanced clarity, cleanliness, processability and mechanical performance.

Grace's CONSISTA C601 PP catalyst, the first sixth-generation non-phthalate-based catalyst and a drop-in solution for the UNIPOL PP process, reportedly enhances performance and processing of homopolymers, random copolymers and impact copolymers. With random copolymers made from CONSISTA catalysts combined with Milliken's Millad NX 8000 clarifier, customers can achieve additional benefits such as glass-like transparency and faster cycle times.

"Combining our CONSISTA catalyst with Milliken's innovative additives yields results that are much more than the sum of these two technologies," said Ella Chen, UNIPOL PP Licensing global market director. "Together, our solutions address a broad spectrum of resin manufacturers' requirements, from higher melt flow to lower-temperature processing for cycle time reduction. Major manufacturers are already taking full advantage of the synergies between our two offerings to produce new polypropylene grades that target consumer demand for clarity, safety and sustainability. This collaboration is another example of our longstanding, successful partnership with Milliken."

Several UNIPOL PP process licensees are leveraging the Grace and Milliken technologies to produce resins that meet the stringent requirements of customers.

CONSISTA C601 catalyst imparts a balance of impact and stiffness to enable lightweight, thin-wall designs. The technology enables the production of random copolymers with improved taste and odor performance for food contact applications. The CONSISTA catalyst enables faster cycle times by increasing melt flow rates, while its broader molecular weight distribution improves the mechanical and processing attributes for a variety of applications.

When new generation Millad NX 8000 clarifier and CONSISTA catalyst are combined in random copolymers with a high melt flow rate (MFR), they enable up to a 36% reduction in haze over previous generations to provide a high transparency, bright appearance and high gloss in molded parts. Simultaneously, the Milliken additive also allows PP to be processed at significantly lower temperatures of 190C to 200C, a reduction of up to 40 degrees compared to less-advanced clarifiers. These cooler temperatures shorten cooling times and increase productivity by facilitating mold release.

"Grace's technologies set the standard for polypropylene catalyst innovation and we are pleased that our next-generation clarifying agent adds significant value," said Wim Van de Velde, global marketing director for Milliken & Co. "By adding our Millad NX 8000 to resins catalyzed with CONSISTA catalyst, manufacturers can gain even greater aesthetic, processing and performance advantages."

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