Article | March 5, 2020
Polyurethanes have long been known to produce coatings that exhibit high toughness, abrasion resistance, enhanced aesthetics, and durability. Solvent-based polyurethanes have traditionally set the performance standard for high durability coatings. However, environmental considerations for low-VOC alternatives and reduced exposure to solvents has stimulated the development of alternative technologies based on waterborne polyurethane systems.
Article | March 3, 2020
Sustainability fervor – which has been building in importance over the past few years – has reached a new height in 2020. Chemical industry leaders made lofty statements at the World Economic Forum in Davos about the importance of engaging in sustainable development. Despite that, the chemicals industry is big, conservative, and typically slow to move. This raises the question: "What factors will really force change in the chemicals industry, and what does that change look like?" In this blog, we examine three possible drivers of change – carbon taxes, investor pressure, and supply chain pressure – and discuss their possible implications. We specifically focus on chemical companies, as highly carbon-intensive industries like cement and steel face a very different picture with respect to sustainability challenges.
Article | June 13, 2021
NOBODY SHOULD be surprised that the developing world has fallen behind in the battle to reduce greenhouse gas emissions as the region is a long way from recovering from the pandemic.Evidence to this effect emerged last week in comments made by Fatih Birol, executive director of the International Energy Agency (IEA).
“In many emerging and developing economies, emissions are heading upwards while clean energy investments are faltering, creating a dangerous fault line in global efforts to reach climate and sustainable energy goals,” said Birol.
At the current rate, carbon dioxide emissions from developing countries largely in Asia, Africa and Latin America are set to increase by 5bn tonnes/year over the next two decades, according to the IEA, as access to power increases.At present, around 785m people worldwide have no access to electricity. There are also 2.6bn people without access to clean cooking options.
Article | May 19, 2021
The market size for polymeric and resin binders in the global printing ink marketwas estimated to be over 1,200,000 MT in 2020, with a CAGR of about five percent. A major driver of this growth comes from the packaging industry, due to increases in consumer spending and online shopping, as well as demand for processed and packaged foods and beverages.
In addition, increased use of water-based inks is promoting market growth, off-setting environmental and health concerns regarding solvent-based inks in addition to strict environmental protection policies. Water-based inks are projected to overtake solvent-based inks due to environmental regulations, the reduction of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the pressroom, and improvements in overall print quality.
Ink formulations are complex mixtures, consisting of four basic component classes: pigments, polymeric binder resins, solvents or an aqueous dispersant media, and additives, such as surfactants, waxes, and rheology modifiers that enhance print quality. The purpose of the resin binder is to disperse and carry the ink pigment to the substrate, stabilize the pigment and additives dispersion to prevent settling, and provide print properties such as ink transfer behavior, setting, and drying characteristics. The binder also contributes surface appearance and gloss, strength and flexibility, chemical and solvent resistance, and also rub resistance. Ink binders can be categorized into the following polymer and resin types: acrylics, polyurethanes, polyamides, modified resins, hydrocarbon resins, and modified cellulosics.