Additives for Polymers (v.2010, #1)

New Jersey-based speciality chemicals supplier International Specialty Products Inc (ISP) has introduced a new family of additives for plastics applications that is claimed to provide enhanced performance and processing benefits. Called Flexidone™, the ISP additives are based on alkyl pyrrolidone chemistry, offering the benefit of improved solvency in PVC applications, the firm says.

BASF Corp, the North American affiliate of Germany's BASF SE, is extending its portfolio of effect pigments with the introduction of Lumina® Royal, the newest generation of Lumina mica-based effect pigments. According to the firm, these new high-chromaticity and high-reflectivity pigments out-perform currently available interference blue effect pigments.

Ohio-based Americhem Inc, a global producer of custom colour and additive solutions for polymeric products, has introduced a post consumer recyclate (PCR) renewal additive that is said to add clarity and eliminate the yellow discoloration normally associated with recycled resin.

Grace Davison, the speciality chemicals arm of W. R. Grace & Co, has introduced Sylobloc® 45B, a new synthetic silica antiblocking additive intended for use by masterbatchers, polyolefin film producers and converters.

Synthetic calcium carbonate specialist CalciTech Ltd of Geneva, Switzerland, has launched CalciRC100S™ for use as a high-performance filler in plastics. According to the firm, this new product brings additional benefits compared to conventional calcium carbonates.

French firm Adeka Palmarole, the European arm of Japanese polymer additives company Adeka Corp, has unveiled details of a new nucleating agent for polyethylene terephthalate, T-1465N. Developed by the parent company in Japan, data on the new additive were presented to a wider audience for the first time by Adeka Palmarole at the recent SpecPlast 2009 conference, organized by Maack Business Services and held in September in Zürich, Switzerland.

PolyOne Corp has introduced a new line of USP Class VI colorants for medical devices called OnColor™ HC Gamma Stable Color Concentrates. This addition to the company's portfolio of healthcare solutions is formulated to eliminate colour shift and minimize property reductions in medical polymers after devices are sterilized. In related news, PolyOne has also launched a line of colorants and additives designed exclusively for Dow Chemical's new Dow Health+™ Polymers.

Additives major Chemtura Corp reports that it is further growing its global antioxidant business with an additional capacity expansion at Gulf Stabilizers Industries (GSI), its joint venture facility with Al-Zamil Group in Al Jubail, Saudi Arabia.Engineering work has already commenced on an additional 4000 tonnes of capacity, which is scheduled to come on stream in 2010 taking GSI's total capacity at the site to 21 000 tonnes/year.

Fellow US firms Huber Engineered Materials and Sherwin-Williams Co are collaborating on the development of new flame retardant products for the wire and cable industry as part of their ongoing commitment to grow their portfolios of environmentally friendly low-smoke and zero-halogen magnesium hydroxide (MDH) products. An area of emphasis is on enhancing the flame retardancy of MDH in ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) copolymers, which are commonly used in wire and cable applications.

Speciality chemicals firm Clariant has announced plans to further optimize its global production network in order to address overcapacities and reduce costs. The announcement comes in the wake of a 19% decline in sales and a 40% fall in operating earnings before special items in the third quarter of 2009.

In Germany, Altana AG's management and supervisory boards have considered the improved offer from SKion GmbH of €14.00 per share made on 9 November 2009 and deemed the purchase price appropriate. They have therefore recommended that the company's shareholders accept the offer, which was due to close in mid December.

Eastman Chemical Co has established bulk storage capacity in the European Union (EU) for its non-phthalate plasticizers Eastman™ 168 and Eastman DBT. The storage expansion, located in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, supplements the company's existing storage for its TXIB™ plasticizer and has been established in response to rapidly growing demand for all three products in the European market, Eastman reports.

Chemtura Corp recorded net earnings on a GAAP basis of US$8 million for the third quarter of 2009. This is a decline of 27% from the 3Q 2008 figure of $11 million. Net sales for 3Q 2009 were $681 million, down from $924 million for the same period the previous year.

For the third quarter of 2009, Albemarle Corp reported earnings of US$52.1 million, down 7.3% from 3Q 2008 earnings of $56.2 million. Net sales for the quarter fell 22% year on year to $515.3 million. However, the company reported a sequential improvement in net sales for 3Q 2009 in all business segments.

Ohio-based PolyOne Corp reported net income of US$49.6 million in the third quarter of 2009, compared with a net loss of $5.6 million in 3Q 2008. Revenues of $548.3 million were down 25% compared with revenues of $735.1 million in 3Q 2008, but rose 10% from the 2Q 2009 figure. Results in the third quarter of 2009 benefited from $17.7 million (after tax) of special items and favourable tax adjustments.

The European Commission is fining a number of plastics additives producers a total of €173.9 million for price fixing and market-sharing cartels in the PVC heat stabilizers market prior to 2000. The investigation began in 2003 following an immunity application lodged by Chemtura Corp.

Stafford-based Addmaster and fellow UK firm RockTron have recently been honoured for their contributions to the polymer additives sector.