Additives for Polymers (v.2015, #11)

In the USA, Akcros Chemicals Inc has announced the availability of Akcrostab BZ-5295NP, a new barium-zinc heat stabilizer for flexible PVC film applications. According to the company, the new product was developed to meet the lower volatility and tighter environmental standards required by US consumers of vinyl building products.

Masterbatch specialist Ampacet Corp has announced the global launch of FusionFx, four colour palettes that use proprietary technology to produce a random infusion of colour effects during the injection moulding of polypropylene parts. According to the company, these effects enable designers to create a one-of-a-kind product that ‘celebrates individual expression and the raw beauty found in nature's imperfections’.

After more than a year of activity in the market, South Korean polymer additives manufacturer Songwon Industrial has extended its Songnox® PQ stabilizer product range in response to the ‘ever-expanding needs’ of its customers.

Leading talc producer Imerys Talc has expanded its portfolio for the plastics and rubber industries with the introduction of several new grades offering a range of property enhancements. The new grades are sourced and produced in North America to provide domestic markets with an alternative to imported European products.

Arkema has introduced new fluorinated products in its Kynar Flex® line of polymer process aids (PPAs). The new PPAs are designed for speciality applications in which the polyolefin temperatures are relatively low and the processor is interested in improving the surface smoothness of films, moulded parts or extrusions, the company reports. An additional PPA development focuses on the reduction of die build-up in highly filled polyolefins.

ICL Industrial Products (ICL-IP), a segment of Israeli Chemicals company ICL, has developed two additional speciality grades of its new polymeric flame retardant (PolyFR) product FR-122P for expanded and extruded polystyrene (XPS and EPS) applications. The new compacted grades – one suitable for the EPS market and the other tailored for XPS applications – complement the company's existing powder-form FR-122P grades.

Darmstadt-based performance materials producer Merck has launched Tigris Blue, the third effect pigment from its Xirallic® NXT series. As with its predecessors in this range, the latest pigment innovation is suitable for both interior and exterior applications, and can be used in combinations with other colour and effect pigments, the company says.

Germany's Rowa Masterbatch GmbH, a division of Rowa Group, is investing in a capacity expansion at its Technical Centre in Pinneberg in response to increased demand from customers. The company reports that it is installing a new production line, which will be in operation by the end of this year. A cast film line for development work is also being added.

US firm Techmer PM, a producer of colour and additive masterbatches for plastics and fibres, has announced a partnership with compatriot Applied DNA Sciences, Inc (ADNAS), to apply DNA tagging to synthetic fibre applications. According to the partners, this innovative approach will provide consumer and industrial product manufacturers with increased product and brand protection against counterfeiting.

At its Southfield site in Michigan, USA, BASF Corp, the North American affiliate of BASF SE, has inaugurated a technical laboratory for its customers in the plastics and coatings industries. It centralizes laboratory operations for the Dispersions & Pigments Division's Transportation, Industrial Coatings and Plastics (TICP) business, which had previously been operating from three different locations in the USA.

Austrian-based manufacturer of PVC stabilizers Chemson has invested £1 million (c. €1.4 million) in several new initiatives to help boost the market status of its UK operation. New machinery and technology systems have been installed at the firm's Newcastle upon Tyne plant to speed up its internal production and despatch processes, several new highly skilled appointments have been made and a staff training programme has been undertaken, Chemson reports. The company says that these initiatives will ‘significantly increase’ its product range and improve customer response times.

The board of directors of Ashland Inc has approved a plan to separate the company into two independent, publicly traded entities: ‘New Ashland’ and Valvoline. The decision follows a comprehensive strategic planning review by the company's leadership team to better understand its markets, customers and the opportunities for each business to create the most value for stakeholders. It also represents the final step in Ashland's more than decade-long transformation from an oil refiner to a speciality chemicals company, during which it completed dozens of acquisitions and divestitures.

Swiss colour science specialist X-Rite Inc and its subsidiary Pantone LLC have launched the Judge QC light booth designed to better simulate and evaluate colours under a range of lighting conditions. With the new booth, quality control professionals in the paint, plastics, textiles and commercial printing and packaging industries will be able to evaluate incoming materials, samples and final products more accurately for colour consistency and physical defects, the companies say.

German instruments maker Micro-Epsilon has launched an inline colour measurement system that allows the colour of plastic injection moulded parts to be automatically checked earlier in the production process. The high-speed colorCONTROL ACS7000 system inspects the colour of injection moulded parts as they are extracted from the mould, without having to wait for the parts to cool down. The company claims that this greatly reduces cycle times and allows for 100% colour quality control.

Researchers at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York, USA, have published findings that link plasticizers diisononyl phthalate (DINP) and diisodecyl phthalate (DIDP) to a rise in the risk of hypertension and diabetes in children and adolescents. Elsewhere, an in vitro study at Canada's McGill University suggests that metabolites of phthalate-replacement plasticizer DINCH may have a disruptive impact on the mammalian endocrine system.