What Are Fine Chemicals?

The initial versions of drugs were produced by extracting substances from natural herbs and other plants. As understanding and technology in chemistry continued to grow, scientists figured out to isolate and extract a lot more individual compounds from raw materials. The complicated processes that produce these simple, pure substances form the field of fine chemistry. The chemical industry is separated into branches, with fine chemicals serving as the smallest segment of them. Its companions are commodities and specialty chemicals. Commodity chemicals are those that are mass-produced on a big scale to supply global markets. They include general compounds that are the same from supplier to supplier. Specialty chemicals usually are sold as brand name products and are advertised for their distinct qualities and their abilities to carry out functions that other chemicals cannot. They are composed of one or more fine chemicals.

Spotlight

European Association of Chemical Distributors

Fecc is the voice of the Chemical Distribution Industry in Europe. With a growing membership of companies and national associations, Fecc represents around 1,700 companies of which many are small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). The Chemical distribution industry in Europe employs around 30,000 people and has an annual sales leverage of approximately €26 billion.

OTHER ARTICLES
Chemical Management

Petrochemicals markets complexity is only going to grow and grow

Article | July 13, 2021

NICE WORK, if you get can get it. A trucking company in Fort Worth, Texas, is offering to pay experienced drivers $14,000 a week – $728,000 a year – as the US struggles with a nationwide shortage of truckers or lorry drivers. This reminds me of perhaps an apocryphal tale, from the height of the last Australian mining boom. Before iron ore prices collapsed in late 2014, there was a story about workers at mining site road junctions who operated manual “Stop and Go” signs. They were said to be earning more than Australian dollar (A$) 200,000 a year. Before you pack in your job as, say, a petrochemicals sales manager and head to Texas or mine sites in Western Australia, there is the risk that when you arrive at the door of your new prospective employer, the bubble might have already burst. This is assuming we are in bubble conditions.The pressure is clearly building in petrochemicals and other commodity markets as prices in some regions remain at record highs or continue to rise. Today’s prices are the results of shortages of commodities supply (for example in petrochemicals, an outcome of the US winter storms), very strong demand and supply chain disruptions.I am beginning to believe that the latter is the biggest reason for commodity price inflation which is feeding through into sharp rises in the cost of finished goods – and a lack of goods availability. It is delivering and manufacturing enough stuff that seems to be at the heart of today’s problems due to shortages of everything from container freight space and semiconductors to wooden pallets, tin cans, metal drums, cardboard – and US truck drivers.

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Chemical Technology

THE BENEFITS OF CHEMICAL FOAMERS, AND HOW BEST TO USE THEM TO MAXIMISE PRODUCTION

Article | July 20, 2022

Downhole fluid build-up coupled with a drop in reservoir pressure can lead to the rapid decline of gas production rates, and can ultimately result in a well ceasing production. While there are many ways to deliquify a well to maximise production, chemical foamers can be incredibly effective and well worth considering. In this blog post, Kevin Lonie shares some of the benefits of using chemical foamers, and provides insights and advice around how best to use them… “Foamers are a much cheaper option than alternative solutions, such as mechanical lifts, and there is very little risk associated with their usage. If a foamer doesn’t work, it won’t make the well worse - so often we see clients giving them a go before opting for more expensive methods, in the hope that they produce the desired results. And we have seen their success over and over again.”

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Chemical Management

Pandemic’s third wave seems unlikely to damage global petrochemicals demand

Article | July 22, 2021

Petrochemical stocks plunged worldwide on 19 July ahead of the Q2 earnings season. The declines were consistent with those in economically sensitive sectors such as steel, copper, automotive and housing,” wrote my ICIS colleague, Joseph Chang, in this Insight article.

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Science and Research

More data show how far we still have to go to solve the climate and plastic waste crises

Article | June 27, 2021

SEE THE END section of this blog post for a dystopian version of our environmental future. In a follow-up post – which I will publish on Thursday, 1 July – I will offer some suggestions about how we can avoid an outcome that nobody of course wants.Both posts are meant to be provocative, challenging and controversial because only through debate, and sometimes outright argument, will we get to the answers. If you disagree after either or both posts have been published, great, that would be good. In fact, I would love to hear from you whatever your views at john.richardson@icis.com. The petrochemicals industry can do this; we can fix this if we create the right forums for ideas and then solutions. Let me provide the background first. Let me start by examining developments in the refinery industry and the implications for petrochemicals as important background. Then I will look at a sample of ICIS petrochemicals demand growth forecasts for 2020-2040. I will conclude by providing the bleakest of bleak outcomes for the world in 2025

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Spotlight

European Association of Chemical Distributors

Fecc is the voice of the Chemical Distribution Industry in Europe. With a growing membership of companies and national associations, Fecc represents around 1,700 companies of which many are small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). The Chemical distribution industry in Europe employs around 30,000 people and has an annual sales leverage of approximately €26 billion.

Related News

Chemical Management

LyondellBasell & MSI Technology, LLC Collaborate on Innovative Consumer Packaging

LyondellBasell | February 02, 2024

LyondellBasell and MSI Technology, LLC announced they have entered into an agreement for MSI Technology to serve the LyondellBasell Polybutene-1 (PB-1) resin line into consumer packaging applications for North America. MSI Technology is also the sales representative for the LyondellBasell Plexar product line. The expansion of the relationship is a strategic fit relative to the markets MSI Technology serves today. MSI Technology will use its technical sales approach combined with its current specialty product portfolio to enhance offerings to customers in consumer packaging. LyondellBasell PB-1 resins are commonly used in consumer packaging applications for easy-open packaging and film modification for seal initiation temperature providing Broad seal-peel temperature range Consistent and reproducible peel performance Adjustable peel force to end-use requirements Similar initiation and propagation peel force "Whitening" with "Smooth & Clean" peel surface Good seal integrity Easy processability Usable in blown film, cast film, extrusion coating and sheet extrusion "At LyondellBasell, we're passionate about creating solutions for everyday sustainable living," said Palmer Giddings, vice president Polymers at LyondellBasell. "Collaborating with MSI Technology on innovative packaging solutions is a major step forward in achieving that goal." "We are thrilled to expand our collaboration with LyondellBasell," said Brian McCaghy, president of MSI Technology. "The PB-1 resins align perfectly with our mission to provide specialty polymers and solutions to the packaging industry." The PB-1 resin line is part of MSI Technology's product offerings. The company also provides clients with access to dedicated sales and technical service specialists who provide guidance on technical resin selection to meet customer requirements. About LyondellBasell We are LyondellBasell – a leader in the global chemical industry creating solutions for everyday sustainable living. Through advanced technology and focused investments, we are enabling a circular and low carbon economy. Across all we do, we aim to unlock value for our customers, investors and society. As one of the world's largest producers of polymers and a leader in polyolefin technologies, we develop, manufacture and market high-quality and innovative products for applications ranging from sustainable transportation and food safety to clean water and quality healthcare. About MSI Technology, LLC MSI Technology specializes in the sales, marketing, and development of specialty polymers. Our product lines include: Plexar tie-layer adhesives (manufactured by LyondellBasell), SPS peelable sealants, and SpeciPurge purging compound. MSI Technology and its sister company, Soarus LLC, are located in Arlington Heights, IL. Soarus markets Soarnol™), ethylene vinyl alcohol copolymer (EVOH), (manufactured by Mitsubishi Chemical Group) into North and Latin America. The two companies together provide sales and technical service for specialty polymers focused on the packaging market.

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Chemical Management

Charter Next Generation Launches GreenArrow™ Cavitated Recycle-Ready PE Films For Confectionery Applications Using Void Technologies'

Charter Next Generation | January 30, 2024

Charter Next Generation (CNG), a leading provider of sustainable films, announced that it has expanded its GreenArrow portfolio with a new line of cavitated polyethylene (PE) films. Developed in collaboration with VOID Technologies (VOID), the new recycle-ready films meet the rapidly growing demand for flow wrap and confectionery applications. Using VOID's patented VO+™ PE Voiding Agent Masterbatch and Machine Direction Orientation (MDO) film processing, CNG has successfully developed high-performing PE film structures that are opaque yet compatible with existing PE recycling streams making more packaging suitable for recycling. Adoption of MDO PE film is a rapidly growing industry trend as it enables recyclable, high-performing flexible packaging. By using VO+ Masterbatch, CNG can now produce thin gauge voided MDO PE films that offer a combination of low density and high opacity not achievable with mineral additives such as TiO2 pigments or CaCO3 cavitation agents. This innovation creates a unique PE-based recycle-ready alternative to conventional PP-based substrates that often require biaxial orientation. "CNG continues to raise the bar and re-invent packaging with a sustainability-first mindset. Using VOID's patented VO+ technology enables us to achieve the high opacity, ease of processing, and recycle-ready performance we are targeting for these films. This in turn allows our customers to reduce their use of virgin materials and process their packaging in existing polyethylene film recycling streams," said Brent Greiner, Vice-President of Technology at Charter Next Generation. The VO+ PE Masterbatch is added to PE resin to create nano and micro-scale voids, reducing density and creating high levels of opacity via light scattering through the voided structure. VOID's latest VO+ PE Masterbatch product is compliant with direct food contact standards in North America and Europe and has passed key recycling standards. James Gibson, CEO of VOID Technologies, commented, "CNG is a highly innovative and forward-thinking company. We are delighted with this collaboration and to be part of launching this new generation of recycle-ready voided PE films. As we look to the future, we are excited to be working with CNG across a range of projects that directly address sustainability and recycling targets." About Charter Next Generation Charter Next Generation (CNG) is North America's leading producer of highly engineered solutions used in the food, consumer, healthcare, and industrial markets. Committed to a sustainability-first approach, CNG leverages material science to engineer materials that help companies meet and exceed their sustainability goals. Known for world-class manufacturing capabilities and an innovation-driven approach, CNG operates fifteen facilities and employs over 2,200 employees and is a proud partner of Ownership Works®—a nonprofit partnering with companies to enable shared ownership, granting employees a stake in the value they create. About VOID Technologies VOID is a materials science company accelerating the transition to more sustainable plastics and packaging. The company combines its VO+ cavitation technology and R&D labs to help plastic and packaging companies rapidly develop new innovative products with a reduced environmental footprint. VOID's extensively patented VO+ technology was first conceived as part of a research initiative at Kimberly-Clark. Soon after, in 2015, VOID was launched as an independent company. Today, VOID has R&D labs and a compound manufacturing facility based in Neenah, Wisconsin (USA) and has commercial teams in Canada, France, and the UK.

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Chemical Management

Infinium and Amogy Team Up to Spearhead Green Ammonia and eFuels Solutions

Infinium | January 25, 2024

Leading eFuels provider Infinium and Amogy Inc. ("Amogy"), a pioneer of carbon-free, energy-dense power solutions, have entered into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to explore opportunities to integrate their technologies and develop commercial applications across the eFuels and green ammonia value chain. Infinium and Amogy are also exploring collaborations with both Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Group and SK Innovation for deployment of the integrated solution. To accelerate the decarbonization of heavy industry sectors, the companies will jointly study and identify the most suitable applications to deploy their eFuels and green ammonia solutions. A key focus of this collaboration is the potential integration of Amogy's ammonia-cracking technology to provide low-cost, accessible green hydrogen feedstock as an input to produce Infinium's eFuels. Infinium eFuels, also known as electrofuels or Power-to-X, are made from green hydrogen and waste carbon dioxide (CO2) in a proprietary process. Amogy's ammonia-cracking technology leverages its state-of-the-art catalyst materials to crack ammonia into hydrogen and nitrogen at lower reaction temperatures with high durability, reducing heating and maintenance requirements. Upon identifying promising applications, Infinium and Amogy will initiate strategic pilot programs, showcasing tangible and scalable implementations of their clean technology solutions. The partnership also entails the evaluation of additional opportunities for collaboration within the eFuels and ammonia spaces, with a focus on the development of commercial use cases. "Ingenuity and collaboration are critical to creating decarbonization solutions today. Our partnership with Amogy will go a long way toward helping advance our ability to rapidly scale the production of ultra-low carbon Infinium eFuels, including eSAF, eDiesel and eNaphtha," said Robert Schuetzle, CEO at Infinium. "We are thrilled to forge this alliance with Infinium. By uniting our expertise and resources, we aim to unlock innovative opportunities that will pave the way for sustainable solutions," says Seonghoon Woo, CEO of Amogy. "This partnership reflects a shared commitment to accelerating technologies that can contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions in the heavy industry sectors." Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has invested in both Infinium and Amogy and is exploring potential collaboration for new solutions and applications in energy sector project development. "Decarbonizing heavy industries requires numerous approaches that can concurrently and collaboratively help mitigate greenhouse gas emissions," said Ricky Sakai, Senior Vice President of New Business Development at MHI of America. "We are excited to see how Amogy's emission-free, energy-dense ammonia solution and Infinium's proprietary eFuels production process might be aligned to overcome challenges and accelerate the global availability of commercial decarbonization solutions." SK Trading International (SKTI) invests in solutions that contribute to addressing climate change and environmental pollution and is an investor in Infinium while its parent company SK Innovation has invested in Amogy. "Our global goals to slow the warming of the planet require significant efforts so they can quickly scale, find synergies, and explore new pathways," said Hyunchol Park, Managing Director and Head of Global Trading at SKTI. "Infinium and Amogy are leaders in their progress and proven solutions, and I believe their partnership will result in the identification of breakthrough opportunities to expand and grow access to cleaner fuels." About Infinium Infinium is an electrofuels provider on a mission to decarbonize the world. Electrofuels are a new class of synthetic fuels made using renewable power and waste carbon dioxide, not petroleum or resources needed to produce food. Infinium electrofuels can be dropped into existing trucks, planes and ships, significantly reducing harmful carbon dioxide emissions compared to fossil-based fuels. In addition to helping the transport industry meet carbon reduction goals, Infinium electrofuels are a lower carbon alternative for chemical processing, including plastics production. About Amogy Founded in 2020, Amogy is on a mission to unlock the potential of ammonia as a clean energy source, accelerating the global journey to Net Zero and sustaining future generations. With a presence in Brooklyn, Houston, Norway, and Singapore, Amogy is developing fully integrated ammonia-to-power systems to enable the decarbonization of the hard-to-abate sectors, such as shipping, power generation, and heavy-duty transportation.

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Chemical Management

LyondellBasell & MSI Technology, LLC Collaborate on Innovative Consumer Packaging

LyondellBasell | February 02, 2024

LyondellBasell and MSI Technology, LLC announced they have entered into an agreement for MSI Technology to serve the LyondellBasell Polybutene-1 (PB-1) resin line into consumer packaging applications for North America. MSI Technology is also the sales representative for the LyondellBasell Plexar product line. The expansion of the relationship is a strategic fit relative to the markets MSI Technology serves today. MSI Technology will use its technical sales approach combined with its current specialty product portfolio to enhance offerings to customers in consumer packaging. LyondellBasell PB-1 resins are commonly used in consumer packaging applications for easy-open packaging and film modification for seal initiation temperature providing Broad seal-peel temperature range Consistent and reproducible peel performance Adjustable peel force to end-use requirements Similar initiation and propagation peel force "Whitening" with "Smooth & Clean" peel surface Good seal integrity Easy processability Usable in blown film, cast film, extrusion coating and sheet extrusion "At LyondellBasell, we're passionate about creating solutions for everyday sustainable living," said Palmer Giddings, vice president Polymers at LyondellBasell. "Collaborating with MSI Technology on innovative packaging solutions is a major step forward in achieving that goal." "We are thrilled to expand our collaboration with LyondellBasell," said Brian McCaghy, president of MSI Technology. "The PB-1 resins align perfectly with our mission to provide specialty polymers and solutions to the packaging industry." The PB-1 resin line is part of MSI Technology's product offerings. The company also provides clients with access to dedicated sales and technical service specialists who provide guidance on technical resin selection to meet customer requirements. About LyondellBasell We are LyondellBasell – a leader in the global chemical industry creating solutions for everyday sustainable living. Through advanced technology and focused investments, we are enabling a circular and low carbon economy. Across all we do, we aim to unlock value for our customers, investors and society. As one of the world's largest producers of polymers and a leader in polyolefin technologies, we develop, manufacture and market high-quality and innovative products for applications ranging from sustainable transportation and food safety to clean water and quality healthcare. About MSI Technology, LLC MSI Technology specializes in the sales, marketing, and development of specialty polymers. Our product lines include: Plexar tie-layer adhesives (manufactured by LyondellBasell), SPS peelable sealants, and SpeciPurge purging compound. MSI Technology and its sister company, Soarus LLC, are located in Arlington Heights, IL. Soarus markets Soarnol™), ethylene vinyl alcohol copolymer (EVOH), (manufactured by Mitsubishi Chemical Group) into North and Latin America. The two companies together provide sales and technical service for specialty polymers focused on the packaging market.

Read More

Chemical Management

Charter Next Generation Launches GreenArrow™ Cavitated Recycle-Ready PE Films For Confectionery Applications Using Void Technologies'

Charter Next Generation | January 30, 2024

Charter Next Generation (CNG), a leading provider of sustainable films, announced that it has expanded its GreenArrow portfolio with a new line of cavitated polyethylene (PE) films. Developed in collaboration with VOID Technologies (VOID), the new recycle-ready films meet the rapidly growing demand for flow wrap and confectionery applications. Using VOID's patented VO+™ PE Voiding Agent Masterbatch and Machine Direction Orientation (MDO) film processing, CNG has successfully developed high-performing PE film structures that are opaque yet compatible with existing PE recycling streams making more packaging suitable for recycling. Adoption of MDO PE film is a rapidly growing industry trend as it enables recyclable, high-performing flexible packaging. By using VO+ Masterbatch, CNG can now produce thin gauge voided MDO PE films that offer a combination of low density and high opacity not achievable with mineral additives such as TiO2 pigments or CaCO3 cavitation agents. This innovation creates a unique PE-based recycle-ready alternative to conventional PP-based substrates that often require biaxial orientation. "CNG continues to raise the bar and re-invent packaging with a sustainability-first mindset. Using VOID's patented VO+ technology enables us to achieve the high opacity, ease of processing, and recycle-ready performance we are targeting for these films. This in turn allows our customers to reduce their use of virgin materials and process their packaging in existing polyethylene film recycling streams," said Brent Greiner, Vice-President of Technology at Charter Next Generation. The VO+ PE Masterbatch is added to PE resin to create nano and micro-scale voids, reducing density and creating high levels of opacity via light scattering through the voided structure. VOID's latest VO+ PE Masterbatch product is compliant with direct food contact standards in North America and Europe and has passed key recycling standards. James Gibson, CEO of VOID Technologies, commented, "CNG is a highly innovative and forward-thinking company. We are delighted with this collaboration and to be part of launching this new generation of recycle-ready voided PE films. As we look to the future, we are excited to be working with CNG across a range of projects that directly address sustainability and recycling targets." About Charter Next Generation Charter Next Generation (CNG) is North America's leading producer of highly engineered solutions used in the food, consumer, healthcare, and industrial markets. Committed to a sustainability-first approach, CNG leverages material science to engineer materials that help companies meet and exceed their sustainability goals. Known for world-class manufacturing capabilities and an innovation-driven approach, CNG operates fifteen facilities and employs over 2,200 employees and is a proud partner of Ownership Works®—a nonprofit partnering with companies to enable shared ownership, granting employees a stake in the value they create. About VOID Technologies VOID is a materials science company accelerating the transition to more sustainable plastics and packaging. The company combines its VO+ cavitation technology and R&D labs to help plastic and packaging companies rapidly develop new innovative products with a reduced environmental footprint. VOID's extensively patented VO+ technology was first conceived as part of a research initiative at Kimberly-Clark. Soon after, in 2015, VOID was launched as an independent company. Today, VOID has R&D labs and a compound manufacturing facility based in Neenah, Wisconsin (USA) and has commercial teams in Canada, France, and the UK.

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Chemical Management

Infinium and Amogy Team Up to Spearhead Green Ammonia and eFuels Solutions

Infinium | January 25, 2024

Leading eFuels provider Infinium and Amogy Inc. ("Amogy"), a pioneer of carbon-free, energy-dense power solutions, have entered into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to explore opportunities to integrate their technologies and develop commercial applications across the eFuels and green ammonia value chain. Infinium and Amogy are also exploring collaborations with both Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Group and SK Innovation for deployment of the integrated solution. To accelerate the decarbonization of heavy industry sectors, the companies will jointly study and identify the most suitable applications to deploy their eFuels and green ammonia solutions. A key focus of this collaboration is the potential integration of Amogy's ammonia-cracking technology to provide low-cost, accessible green hydrogen feedstock as an input to produce Infinium's eFuels. Infinium eFuels, also known as electrofuels or Power-to-X, are made from green hydrogen and waste carbon dioxide (CO2) in a proprietary process. Amogy's ammonia-cracking technology leverages its state-of-the-art catalyst materials to crack ammonia into hydrogen and nitrogen at lower reaction temperatures with high durability, reducing heating and maintenance requirements. Upon identifying promising applications, Infinium and Amogy will initiate strategic pilot programs, showcasing tangible and scalable implementations of their clean technology solutions. The partnership also entails the evaluation of additional opportunities for collaboration within the eFuels and ammonia spaces, with a focus on the development of commercial use cases. "Ingenuity and collaboration are critical to creating decarbonization solutions today. Our partnership with Amogy will go a long way toward helping advance our ability to rapidly scale the production of ultra-low carbon Infinium eFuels, including eSAF, eDiesel and eNaphtha," said Robert Schuetzle, CEO at Infinium. "We are thrilled to forge this alliance with Infinium. By uniting our expertise and resources, we aim to unlock innovative opportunities that will pave the way for sustainable solutions," says Seonghoon Woo, CEO of Amogy. "This partnership reflects a shared commitment to accelerating technologies that can contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions in the heavy industry sectors." Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has invested in both Infinium and Amogy and is exploring potential collaboration for new solutions and applications in energy sector project development. "Decarbonizing heavy industries requires numerous approaches that can concurrently and collaboratively help mitigate greenhouse gas emissions," said Ricky Sakai, Senior Vice President of New Business Development at MHI of America. "We are excited to see how Amogy's emission-free, energy-dense ammonia solution and Infinium's proprietary eFuels production process might be aligned to overcome challenges and accelerate the global availability of commercial decarbonization solutions." SK Trading International (SKTI) invests in solutions that contribute to addressing climate change and environmental pollution and is an investor in Infinium while its parent company SK Innovation has invested in Amogy. "Our global goals to slow the warming of the planet require significant efforts so they can quickly scale, find synergies, and explore new pathways," said Hyunchol Park, Managing Director and Head of Global Trading at SKTI. "Infinium and Amogy are leaders in their progress and proven solutions, and I believe their partnership will result in the identification of breakthrough opportunities to expand and grow access to cleaner fuels." About Infinium Infinium is an electrofuels provider on a mission to decarbonize the world. Electrofuels are a new class of synthetic fuels made using renewable power and waste carbon dioxide, not petroleum or resources needed to produce food. Infinium electrofuels can be dropped into existing trucks, planes and ships, significantly reducing harmful carbon dioxide emissions compared to fossil-based fuels. In addition to helping the transport industry meet carbon reduction goals, Infinium electrofuels are a lower carbon alternative for chemical processing, including plastics production. About Amogy Founded in 2020, Amogy is on a mission to unlock the potential of ammonia as a clean energy source, accelerating the global journey to Net Zero and sustaining future generations. With a presence in Brooklyn, Houston, Norway, and Singapore, Amogy is developing fully integrated ammonia-to-power systems to enable the decarbonization of the hard-to-abate sectors, such as shipping, power generation, and heavy-duty transportation.

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