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Solar’s prospects push DuPont to EVA and polyvinyl fluoride startups

DuPont has started ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) production at its Chinese joint venture Beijing Hua Mei Polymer Company Limited, with plans to market the EVA produced there under the Elvax brand. DuPont says the joint venture will supply a broad range of specialty EVAs targeting market segments like packaging, adhesives, wire and cable, footwear, renewable energy, and electronics.

DuPont has started ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) production at its Chinese joint venture Beijing Hua Mei Polymer Company Limited, with plans to market the EVA produced there under the Elvax brand. DuPont says the joint venture will supply a broad range of specialty EVAs targeting market segments like packaging, adhesives, wire and cable, footwear, renewable energy, and electronics.

DuPont splits its Elvax EVA resins into two markets: packaging and industrial. In packaging, the resins can be made into blown, extruded, cast, and coextruded films, or be blended with other resins. In industrial markets, the material's inherent flexibility, toughness, and clarity lend it to being molded or extruded into hoses and tubes. It can also be formulated into hot-melt adhesives used in plastics compounding, applied as wire and cable insulation, and see use in solar cells as an encapsulant.

Market watchers says DuPont's is one of several large factories specializing in vinyl acetate planned, with new enterprises set to appear in China, India, Iran and Saudi Arabia. There are to be three new plants in China, with two running 200,000 tons/yr of capacity, and one offering 300,000 tons of annual production capacity.

Solar also shines on Solamet, and Tedlar
Citing strong, continued growth in the solar energy industry, DuPont has made a number of recent announcements regarding products that see use in that segment. On August 31, DuPont announced plans to double production capacity for its Solamet photovoltaic metallization pastes. The company said the capacity increase is in anticipation of an internal forecast that its own sales into photovoltaic applications will exceed $1 billion in 2011 and $2 billion by 2014.

On August 25, DuPont announced that production of its Tedlar polyvinyl fluoride (PVF) resin has begun at the company's Fayetteville Works facility. Tedlar films can serve as a component in photovoltaic backsheets, boosting long-term durability and performance for solar modules in all-weather conditions. The increase in production at Fayetteville is part of a previously announced multi-phase $295 million investment by DuPont to more than double Tedlar film capacity for the photovoltaic industry. Beyond this second production line for PVF resins at Fayetteville, DuPont is planning additional Tedlar film production in Circleville, OH, with startup planned in September 2011. 

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