Coronavirus affects Americas petrochemicals markets

S&P Global | March 25, 2020

While chemical manufacturing is among sectors deemed critical to combat the spread of the coronavirus, markets continue to face serious challenges as end-users step back and cancel or postpone orders, unable to gauge demand in the coming weeks and months amid increasing stay-at-home orders throughout the Americas. Some polymer markets are showing the strain, as export markets want less US polyvinyl chloride, a construction staple and key economic indicator, and US prices for polyethylene terephthalate, the plastic used for beverage bottles, reached a 14-year low as its feedstock prices take sharp dives. "Petrochemical liquidity and price transparency during March has been severely limited as buyers and sellers prioritize managing the safety of their employees. As we head into April, contract negotiations will force market participants to set prices based on the lowest energy and feedstock prices since 2008," Rob Stier, Senior Manager Petrochemical Analytics at S&P Global Platts, said.

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CAS applies AI-driven approach in collaboration with INPI Brazil to transform patent examinations

CAS | March 22, 2022

CAS, a division of the American Chemical Society, recently completed a major project with The National Institute of Industrial Property of Brazil to implement an enhanced examination workflow solution for chemistry patent applications using a unique blend of technology, artificial intelligence, data, and expertise. The new solution reduced application examination times by up to 50%, helping the office achieve their goal of clearing 80% of their multi-year application backlog. "Overcoming delays in the patent cycle has a significant, positive impact on innovation and economic growth in Brazil. Quickly granting patent rights accelerates investment, because applicants are confident their products will not be copied, which is the inventor's greatest fear. A structured, predictable and strong IP ecosystem helps ensure investment," Gabriel Di Blasi, Founding Partner, Di Blasi, Parente & Associates, of Rio de Janeiro Brazil's rapid growth caused patent application volume to outpace the patent office's examination capacity. The new, optimized examination workflow uses CAS's AI technology and eliminates a significant number of examiner search steps, allowing the office to better keep pace with projected application volumes. "The challenges faced by INPI Brazil reflect the unprecedented demands on patent offices around the world. As the largest economy in Latin America, the imperative to improve patent pendency was clear," said CAS President Manuel Guzman. "We are proud of the meaningful impact our work with INPI has already achieved and believe this solution provides an excellent starting point to help other patent offices optimize resources and ensure sustainable growth." CAS worked with INPI Brazil to tailor a solution to their unique needs. By employing multiple AI algorithms trained with patent office data and the scientist-curated CAS Content Collection™, the approach meaningfully increased examiner productivity. INPI Brazil reported that the CAS solution significantly reduced examiner search times for 77% of national applications processed, and that 29% of national applications processed required little or no additional search. "Our solution is designed to transform the prior art search process. Chemistry patent applications are very complex, requiring searches of both text and chemical structures within patent and non-patent publications. This is a unique capability of the CAS-designed solution," said CAS Chief Product Officer Tim Wahlberg.

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CHEMICAL MANAGEMENT

CHIMEI Announces the World's First Optical Light Guide Plate Made from Chemically Recycled MMA

Chimei | April 21, 2022

CHIMEI Corporation announced its successful implementation of chemically recycled MMA in optical light guide plates for displays. The light guide plates use recycled MMA, which can maintain the same optical characteristics as the virgin MMA. CHIMEI plans to begin mass production of the recycled MMA light guide plates in Q3, 2023. CHIMEI has successfully introduced new solutions and created new areas for recycled materials in displays. It has reached an important milestone for the sustainable circular journey of displays. In order to fully realize circular recycling and carbon reductions, CHIMEI is working with the supply chain to develop and use various sustainable materials, including mechanical recycling, chemical recycling, and biomass materials. As an important international PMMA acrylic pellet and light guide plate supplier, CHIMEI has actively evaluated recycling technologies suitable for optical materials in response to the customers' expectations for recycled material usage. Additionally, CHIMEI possesses years of manufacturing experience and superior technical abilities related to optical materials and plates. The company is the first to successfully introduce recycled MMA optical light guide plates in the market. CHIMEI's achievement shattered the idea that recycled materials can only be used for exterior parts. The company has successfully shown that recycled materials can be used in key optical components, reaching an important milestone for the sustainable circular journey of displays. CHIMEI's recycled MMA uses chemical recycling. The PMMA waste recycled by CHIMEI and its customers is processed through pyrolysis and restored to MMA. This process can reduce the use of new MMA. It uses less energy and the carbon reduction effect is expected to reach 40%. In the future, recycled MMA can be used in CHIMEI PMMA, MS, and MABS products, increasing the circular benefits. CHIMEI has long been dedicated to the development of recycled materials. In 2016, the company first started deployment of mechanical recycling and established the PCR plastic materials recycling supply chain and has already become an important PCR ABS, PCR PC, and PCR alloy supplier. For this success, CHIMEI ventured into the more technical area of chemical recycling. CHIMEI aimed to make greater contributions towards the development of circularly recycled materials. About CHIMEI Corp. CHIMEI is a Taiwan-based performance materials company that designs and manufactures advanced polymer materials, synthetic rubbers, and specialty chemicals.

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CHEMICAL MANAGEMENT

Univar Solutions Expands Houston Solution Center with Addition of Homecare and Industrial Cleaning Laboratory

Univar Solutions Inc. | February 03, 2022

Univar Solutions Inc. a global chemical and ingredient distributor and provider of value-added services, followed up on its commitment to lead technical innovation for the chemical and specialty ingredient industry with the addition of a full-service homecare and industrial cleaning laboratory to its flagship Solution Center in Houston, Texas. A hub for innovation, product testing and application development, this latest investment will further enable Univar Solutions to help its customers better respond to shifts in consumer demand, regulatory changes and ingredient trends with a particular focus on sustainable and natural solutions. A dedicated team of scientists, chemists and technical experts, backed by the latest equipment, analytics and advanced testing processes, will partner with customers and suppliers to help deliver next-generation homecare and industrial cleaning products for better performing and more environmentally friendly solutions. "The fast-growing and ever-evolving nature of the cleaning industry means companies need a valued partner with deep expertise and the latest technology who can help drive technical innovation to bring better sustainability and accelerate the time to market," explained Aaron Lee, global vice president of homecare and industrial cleaning. "We're excited to offer our customers and suppliers access to a truly world-class technical facility staffed by some of the cleaning industry's brightest minds, where together we can help create greener, more sustainable products and solutions for a better world." Across homes, industries and other institutions, the demand for effective, environmentally conscious and sustainable cleaning products is accelerating, particularly in response to the global pandemic and an increase in ingredient literacy. Operating at the intersection of science and technology, the scientists, chemists and technical experts across Univar Solutions' global network of Solution Centers work to help bring simpler, cleaner and more sustainable and effective products to market across the homecare and industrial cleaning, beauty and personal care, food ingredients, pharmaceutical ingredients and other markets. "With our finger on the pulse of ingredient trends, we're combining deep industry and technical knowledge with the latest technology, testing and processes to help brands more efficiently bring new and more environmentally friendly products to market, enter new industry segments, reformulate existing products and respond to consumer demand. The expansion of our flagship facility in Houston, Texas, is just one piece of a global network of solution centers that help support our diverse portfolio of global customers and suppliers." Dr. Andrew Mint, director of global Solution Centers for Univar Solutions Among other services, the laboratory will offer efficacy testing of cleaning products, as the homecare and industrial cleaning industry continues to adapt to the changing demands that have occurred as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and to help bring more sustainable options to the market. End product applications expected to be developed at the facility include industry staples such as detergents, cleaners and disinfectants. About Univar Solutions Univar Solutions is a leading global specialty chemical and ingredient distributor representing a premier portfolio from the world's leading producers. With the industry's largest private transportation fleet and technical sales force, unparalleled logistics know-how, deep market and regulatory knowledge, formulation and recipe development, and leading digital tools, the Company is well-positioned to offer tailored solutions and value-added services to a wide range of markets, industries, and applications. While fulfilling its purpose to help keep communities healthy, fed, clean and safe, Univar Solutions is committed to helping customers and suppliers innovate and focus on Growing Together.

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CHEMICAL MANAGEMENT

Euclid Launches Three New Admixtures at World of Concrete

The Euclid Chemical Company | February 17, 2022

Euclid Chemical, a leading manufacturer of concrete and masonry construction products, announced the launch of three new concrete admixtures at this year's World of Concrete—the concrete industry's largest event for building professionals. EUCOSHIELD™ An integral finishing admixture, EUCOSHIELD is a ready-to-use liquid admixture designed to be used as an integral finishing aid that prevents rapid moisture loss from the concrete surface by binding the internal water in the pore structure. It is especially effective when concreting operations must be performed in direct sun, wind, high temperatures or low relative humidity. EUCOSHIELD can also be used to reduce excessive bleeding and segregation of concrete or mortar. Containing no added chlorides or chemicals known to promote the corrosion of steel, EUCOSHIELD is compatible with most other admixtures commonly used in concrete, including air entraining admixtures, polycarboxylate-based HRWR admixtures (superplasticizers), conventional water reducers and retarders. EUCON ECO-STRENGTH™ A strength-enhancing admixture, EUCON Eco-Strength improves both early- and late-age strength development in concrete. Based on a highly engineered admixture technology that facilitates cement hydration, EUCON Eco-Strength enhances strength development and allows for sustainable construction practices to be achieved through possible total cementitious content reduction. Maintaining compressive strength development equivalent to that of a reference mix containing more cementitious is important in all construction projects requiring CO2 emissions and total embodied energy reduction. EUCON Eco-Strength is particularly effective where heat is present while curing, allowing earlier stripping of forms or restoring the serviceability of concrete repairs. EUCON® AM-10L A liquid integral crystalline waterproofing admixture, Eucon AM-10L is formulated to interact with concrete capillary pore structures to provide a system that greatly reduces the permeability of concrete through the formation of tiny crystals that block the pores. It can also seal microscopic cracks and work in tandem with other products like sealers to create a structural waterproofing system. EUCON AM-10L can be used in both above- and below-grade applications. About Euclid Chemical. Headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, Euclid Chemical has served the global building market for more than a century as a leading manufacturer and supplier of specialty products and technical support services for the concrete and masonry construction industry. Euclid Chemical's expansive product line includes admixtures, fiber reinforcement, concrete repair products, flooring materials, decorative concrete systems and more.

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Chemical Dosing Systems Eflo-Chem offers a complete range of chemical dosing systems to properly inject the required inhibitors at pre-calculated rates. RO System Surveys Eflo-Chem works as a comprehensive solution for any given type of water provided system projection is prepared This projection is based on system data collected ahead of design.

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