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Mitsubishi Rayon and Honam to Expand Production of Methyl Methacrylate Monomer and Acrylic Resin Pellet

Published on 2011-03-01. Author : SpecialChem

Mitsubishi Rayon Co., Ltd. (hereafter "MRC") and Honam Petrochemical Corp. (hereafter "Honam Petrochemical") have decided to expand methyl methacrylate (MMA) monomer and acrylic resin pellet manufacturing facilities at the plant of their joint venture Daesan MMA Corp.

Expansion plan for - MMA monomer

The new production capacity will be 98,000 tons per year (188,000 tons combined with output of existing facilities) and the production is scheduled to begin by January 2013. The plant will be located in Jeollanam-do, South Korea and the manufacturing method will be C4 direct oxidization process for isobutylene*

* This MMA manufacturing method was developed by MRC, using isobutylene as raw material. The isobutylene is obtained from the C4 raffinate after separation of ethylene, propylene and butadiene through naphtha cracking.

Expansion plan for - Acrylic resin pellets

The production capacity will be 60,000 tons per year (110,000 tons per year combined with output of existing facilities) and Production is scheduled to begin by November 2012. The plant will be located in Jeollanam-do, South Korea and the manufacturing method will be: Continuous bulk polymerization*

*Without use of water or solvents, the polymerization initiator is added only to the monomer, and continuous polymerization is carried out through heating. The method enables manufacture of pure polymer, as no supplementary materials are added.

Following integration with Lucite International Group of the United Kingdom in 2009, MRC aims to establish a resilient MMA supply chain using bases around the world, by leveraging competitive production capacity.

A particular focus is the rapidly emerging Asian countries, where demand is growing rapidly for light guide panels for LCD and LED televisions, on top of demand from the automotive and IT sectors. With MMA monomer and polymer likely to remain in tight supply for the foreseeable future, the basic strategy is to build out the production network in Asia and other fast-growing regions.

At Daesan MMA, the joint venture set up with highly competitive partner Honam Petrochemical in the South Korean market, home to world-leading LCD panel companies, the company will position ourselves to respond to strong demand through integrated production systems for monomer and polymer.

In particular, output of 60,000 tons of acrylic resin pellets per year is one of the world's highest levels for a single line. By introducing our proprietary continuous polymerization technologies, the company will supply optimized, high-quality products for optical applications such as LCD and LED televisions.

About Daesan MMA Corp

The company manufacture and does marketing of MMA and methacrylic acid (MAA) monomer (current production capacity: MMA 90,000 tons, MAA 8,000 tons). It also manufactures and marketing of acrylic resin pellets (current production capacity: 50,000 tons*)

Source: Mitsubishi Rayon

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