March's top stories: Scientists use vibrations for catalysts, TGE to build ethane tank

Scientists at the University of Utah in the US found a new way of predicting chemical reactions through vibrations in chemical bonds, Rive Technology and Zeolyst International signed a joint-development agreement to deploy Rive's Molecular Highway Zeolite technology in hydrocracking catalyst applications within the petroleum refining segment. Chemicals Technology wraps up the top stories from March.


University of Utah

Rive Technology and Zeolyst partner for hydrocracking catalyst development

Rive Technology and Zeolyst International signed a joint-development agreement to deploy Rive's Molecular Highway Zeolite technology in hydrocracking catalyst applications within the petroleum refining segment.

Under the deal, both companies will further develop, manufacture and market hydrocracking catalysts for the refining industry.

The deal will bring together Rive's knowledge of catalytic and separations processes in the petroleum refining, chemicals, water and biofuels industries, and Zeolyst's expertise in hydrocracking, product development and manufacturing capabilities.

Vibrations can be used to design better catalysts, scientists say

Researchers

Scientists at the University of Utah, US, found a new way of predicting chemical reactions through vibrations in chemical bonds.

The new method is claimed to help design better catalysts for accelerating reactions, to manufacture medicines, industrial products and new materials with fewer byproducts and less waste.

Catalysts are substances that increase the rate of reaction between other chemicals without changing the catalyst itself.

GT Advanced Technologies to supply equipment for Cosmos Chemicals' polysilicon facility

GT Advanced Technologies secured a $336m deal from Cosmos Chemicals to supply its complete suite of polysilicon production equipment and technology to a facility in Sarawak, Malaysia.

As part of the deal, the company will provide engineering services, hydrochlorination, SDR CVD reactors, filament production and polysilicon processing technologies.

The project is expected to commence in phases, which include the commissioning of engineering work followed by an equipment order.

The facility, which will have annual production capacity of 250,000t, is being backed by Saudi Arabia-based Project Management & Development (PMD).

EC market-tests Solvay and INEOS remedy package for European PVC JV

European Commission

Belgium-based chemical company Solvay and Switzerland-based INEOS offered a new package to address EU competition concerns for their proposal to combine their European chlorvinyls businesses.

The European Commission (EC) decided to market-test the alternative remedy package submitted by Solvay and Ineos to resolve the competition concerns for the planned PVC joint-venture.

The revised remedy package includes the divestment of the PVC plants at Schkopau, Germany; Beek, the Netherlands, and Mazingarbe, France, along with the chlor-alkali, EDC and VCM assets at Tessenderlo, Belgium.

Solvay launches LIFE+ GLEE project to manufacture Li-ion battery materials using water

Solvay Specialty Polymers started its LIFE+ GLEE project, to explore alternative manufacturing processes for lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery materials.

With this project, the company seeks to replace N-Methyl-2-pyrrolidone (NMP) organic solvent with water in the rechargeable Li-ion battery manufacturing process.

The company stated that this can be achieved through a cathode protection technology, which protects the active material from water contact during cathodes manufacturing.

In addition to reducing toxic risks, the technology is claimed to help lower manufacturing costs associated with solvent recovery and re-purification processes.

Total and partners unveil new technology for bio-ethylene production

French oil and gas firm Total, IFP Energies nouvelles (IFPEN) and its subsidiary Axens launched a new technology called Atol, which helps production of bio-ethylene through dehydration of bio-ethanol.

Atol technology is said to be the first of a series of technologies to be developed based on Atol's platform.

The partnership started work on the development of the technology in 2011.

The bio-ethylene generated can be used in existing downstream polymerisation installations, such as polyethylene (PE), polystyrene (PS), polyethyleneteraphthalate (PET), polyvinylchloride (PVC) and acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS).

Maire Tecnimont and Archirodon to support Tahrir petrochemical in Egypt

A consortium of Maire Tecnimont and Archirodon secured a contract to develop facilities for the Tahrir petrochemical complex, located at the entry of the Suez Channel in Egypt.

The project has an estimated value between $1.7bn and $1.95bn, of which 50% is related to Maire Tecnimont.

Under the agreement signed with Carbon Holdings, both companies will construct utilities and offsite facilities for the Tahrir complex, which is anticipated to increase Egypt's annual exports by more than 25%.

INEOS selects TGE to build ethane tank at Grangemouth facility in Scotland

Grangemouth refinery

INEOS Olefins & Polymers (O&P) selected German firm TGE for the construction of an ethane tank at its facility in Grangemouth, Falkirk, Scotland.

The parties have entered into a heads of terms deal for the Scottish project.

The ethane gas terminal will allow INEOS to replace its existing North Sea feedstocks that were running out, and make Grangemouth facility competitive in the long run.