Your Business in Brief - June 2006

ExxonMobil Ends Mytex Joint VentureExxonMobil Chemical Co. , Houston, and Japan’s Mitsubishi Chemical Corp. terminated their Mytex Polymers joint venture on June 1.

ExxonMobil Ends Mytex Joint Venture

ExxonMobil Chemical Co. , Houston, and Japan’s Mitsubishi Chemical Corp. terminated their Mytex Polymers joint venture on June 1. Mytex produces specialty PP compounds for automotive interiors and exteriors. ExxonMobil is transferring its interest in Mytex Polymers Inc., Jeffersonville, Ind., to a Mitsubishi affiliate in the U.S.

At the same time, ExxonMobil is launching a new line of Performance Polyolefins, its first compounded PP products for automotive, complementing its neat homopolymers and impact copolymers. The company already offers compounded PP products for appliances and has had extensive PP compound technology in Europe.


PolyOne Offers Recycling Option

PolyOne Corp., Cleveland, has teamed up with Greenpack Inc., Parkersburg, W.Va., to offer PolyOne’s customers a no-cost program to recycle their industrial packaging. Greenpack accepts used pallets, metal and fiber drums, and boxes. It repairs these items as needed and distributes them for reuse or recycling. During a one-year pilot program, PolyOne said its customers diverted more than 7 million lb of packaging from landfills.


Solvay Completes Two Resin Acquisitions

Solvay S.A. of Belgium has completed its acquisition of two makers of high-performance polymers that will be folded into Solvay Advanced Polymers LLC , Alpharetta, Ga. One purchase was of Mississippi Polymer Technologies (MPT), Bay St. Louis, Miss. It is the sole producer of Parmax SRP (self-reinforcing polymer), a transparent resin with very high stiffness, heat and chemical resistance, and hardness.

The other purchase was of the Polymers Div. of Gharda Chemicals in India. It produced PEEK and high-performance sulfone polymers. Solvay is finalizing plans to expand production of PEEK—a new addition to Solvay’s line—in India “as part of a broader push to establish a strong market position as a supplier of PEEK,” according to a company announcement.

Gharda Chemicals Ltd. in Mumbai will remain in engineering plastics. The company is developing ultra-high performance engineering grades including polyetherketone (PEK), polyetherketoneketone (PEKK), polyether nitrile (PEN), fluoro-polyimides (FPI), and polyamide ether sulfone (PAES). These are expected to find use in high-temperature applications (250 to 300 C) in aerospace, electronics, transportation, and chemical markets. Commercialization is expected by mid- to late 2007. Gharda’s U.S. office is in Newtown, Pa. Tel: (215) 968-9474 •


BASF Doubling Capacity For Polysulfones

BASF AG in Ludwigshafen, Germany, will double capacity for its Ultrason polysulfone and polyethersulfone by the end of 2007. The resins are sold here by BASF Corp. , Engineering Plastics, Wyandotte, Mich.


Sencorp Allies with Asano Laboratories

Sencorp Inc., a manufacturer of thermoforming machinery in Hyannis, Mass., has formed a technology-sharing agreement with Asano Laboratories, an innovative Japanese maker of thermoformers. Sencorp plans to manufacture Asano machines for North America and integrate Asano components such as its quick-response heaters into its own machinery.


RTP Adds Long-Fiber Compound Capacity

RTP Co., Winona, Minn., says it has significantly increased its long-fiber thermoplastic compound capacity with multiple production lines at a new dedicated facility near its headquarters. The company has also expanded its range of products to include long-fiber PP, nylon 6 and 66, PBT, PPA, and PEEK.


Owens Corning Gains TP Technology

Owens Corning, Toledo, Ohio, has gained new capabilities from its newly completed acquisition of the composites business of Asahi Fiber Glass Co., Ltd. in Japan. The acquisition expands its product line to include reinforcements for resins such as LCP, PPS, and PPO-based materials.


Management Buyout Of Novatec, Inc.

A private group of investors led by two experienced executives in the plastics auxiliary equipment business has purchased Novatec, Inc., Baltimore. One is Conrad M. Bessemer, previously head of Conair in the Americas and now president and CEO of Novatec. Another is Lawrence F. DeBaugh, who was president of Novatec and now is chairman. Longtime Novatec executive v.p. Jack Doub remains in that position.

Bessemer told Plastics Technology that Novatec will maintain its material conveying and blending product lines but will focus primarily on dryers. At the NPE show this month, Novatec will broaden its range of drying technologies. It will introduce its first vacuum dryers, wheel-type desiccant dryers, and infrared crystallizer/dryers for PET. These supplement its existing lines of twin-tower desiccant units and compressed-air membrane dryers. Novatec also plans to outfit a full drying lab in which it will test the various dryers’ capabilities and energy consumption in order to be able to recommend the best dryer type for a particular job.


OMV-USA Opens Technical Center

Thermoforming machine supplier OMV-USA has opened a laboratory and technical center at its headquarters in Elkhorn, Wis. The center features a coextrusion system in line with an OMV F25 trim-in-place thermoformer with cleanroom capability. The in-line system will be used to test new materials and develop new process technology for the packaging market.


Ampacet Sells Plant To Alloy Polymers

Ampacet Corp., Tarrytown, N.Y., has sold its Crockett, Texas, compounding plant to custom compounder Alloy Polymers Inc., Richmond, Va. The plant had served Ampacet’s wire and cable toll compounding business, which the company has decided will no longer be a major core business. Alloy Polymers, which has plants in Richmond and Gahanna, Ohio, boosts its compounding capacity with this purchase to over 300 million lb/yr.


New Low-Cost Parts Supplier Established

Machine Parts Surplus in Cincinnati is a new firm that buys manufacturers’ outdated stock in large lots and resells them at discounts of as much as 50% or more from the original OEM prices. These discontinued parts are not rebuilt or used, but “fresh out of the box,” says Machine Parts manager Bob Tanner. Products range from transducers to motors, power supplies, and pumps. The company’s warehouse inventory ranges from a $2 hard-to-find fuse and $20 heater bands to $20,000 servo motors. Current inventory is itemized at Tel: (513) 453-1180


ExxonMobil Adds Vertical Press for TPE Support

ExxonMobil Chemical’s Santoprene specialty products unit (formerly Advanced Elastomer Systems) in Akron, Ohio, has installed a vertical injection machine in its lab. The 130-ton, rotary-table press will be used to assist customers in insert molding and overmolding projects using the company’s Santoprene TPE.