Industry News

Emerald Begins Construction of a Pilot Plant for Specialty Nitrile & Butadiene Emulsion Products

Published on 2013-07-31. Author : SpecialChem

CUYAHOGA FALLS, OH -- Emerald Performance Materials has begun construction of a new pilot plant focusing on its Nychem™ line of Specialty Nitrile and Butadiene Emulsion products at its site in Akron, OH. The new plant will house a reactor and advanced R&D facilities, allowing Emerald to develop products based on a broad range of compositions and expand its portfolio of latex emulsion products. Construction is expected to be completed by September 2013.

"This new pilot plant is a key part of Emerald's strategy to expand the range and scope of our capabilities," said John Zuppo, commercial vice president for the Polymer Additives and Nitriles business group. "It will be a great asset that will help enhance the performance of our emulsions and bring added value to our customers."

The pilot plant will support the continued scale-up of new Nychem products by providing the resources needed to develop new, differentiated and customized nitrile and polymer products for the global market. Among other R&D initiatives, Emerald will pursue new emulsions outside the traditional lattices of butadiene, acrylonitrile and styrene monomers. A more diverse range of compositions will suit a wider range of end-use applications. The new plant will also enable Emerald to provide a range of sample sizes for customers interested in applications development and validation.

Emerald's Akron ISO-9001 operation has been producing nitrile latexes for more than 50 years. Over the last several years, the company has ramped up nitrile-related operations in response to an increase in demand for existing and new products. In addition to the new pilot plant, the company has recently made other investments, including updated process controls and automation, which allow Emerald to expand the range of products it manufactures and further grow the operation.

These developments, as well as similar upgrades, were highlighted at the International Latex Conference in Akron on July 23-24. Emerald representatives presented two papers at the conference. Jeffrey A. Mathys, Ph.D., presented a paper entitled, "An Overview of the Diverse Chemistry and Applications of Nitrile Latex." Mathys is Emerald's R&D manager for the Polymer Additives & Nitriles business group. Robert L. Culp, Emerald's vice president of procurement, provided a current view on raw materials outlook.

Emerald's Nychem Specialty emulsions line is used for a variety of niche applications, including paper, abrasives and tape, adhesives, specialty coatings, coated fabrics, coal tar sealing binders and leather. For many decades, the line was sold under the Hycar® brand, which was one of the first synthetic latex offerings, known for its quality and superior technology foundation. Emerald rebranded the product line following the divestiture of the business from its predecessor company.

Today, Nychem products include nitrile, SB and ABS latex emulsions that provide a combination of properties superior to other polymers and perform well in tough end-use environments. They offer superior grease, oil, fat and solvent resistance. They are also abrasion and caustic resistant, yet soft, elastic and resilient. Their performance features can be further enhanced through vulcanization and, in some cases, cross linked through heat-reactive or carboxyl functional groups present in certain products.

About Emerald

Emerald Performance Materials produces and markets technologically advanced specialty chemicals for a broad range of food and industrial applications. Emerald® products play a variety of roles in the products that are consumed and used every day, enabling them to last longer, look, smell, taste or perform better. Emerald products are used in aerospace, food, beverages, cosmetics, toothpaste, household products, paint, tires, automobiles, sports gear and many other applications. Headquartered in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, Emerald has four business groups, eight operations and approximately 750 employees.

Source: Emerald Performance Materials

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