Sector News

NPE '18: SABIC to expand specialty plastics portfolio

May 8, 2018
Chemical Value Chain

SABIC is looking to become a top 5 global producer of specialty plastics through fresh capital investments both internally and with partner companies, said Steve Bayne, general manager of operations and customer fulfillment at the company, during a Monday news conference at the National Plastics Exposition (NPE).

Bayne said SABIC is engaging in new capacity investments to build up its specialty plastics portfolio.

Among these investments is a project to raise capacity of ULTEM resins by 50% in Singapore, as well as a project to resume production of NORYL resins at its facility at Bergen op Zoom, the Netherlands, which will raise production of NORYL resins by 40%.

ULTEM is a high-heat resistant filament with applications in automotive, healthcare, carbon fibre tooling and short-cycle injection moulding applications. NORYL are modified polyphenylene ether (PPE) resins that consists of amorphous blends of polyphenylene oxide (PPO) and polystyrene (PS).

With the new investment in ULTEM resins, SABIC will become the only producer manufacturing high-heat-resistant resins in each of the European, Asian and American regions.

Bayne said that SABIC is also expanding its additive manufacturing capabilities by making a capital investment in Airborne, a company specialised in automating the process of creating thermoplastic composite laminates for the aerospace and marine sectors, as well as forming a joint venture with Black Diamond Structures, a nanotechnology start-up with a focus on energy storage applications.

SABIC’s recent acquisition of a 24.99% stake in Clariant was also listed among their efforts to expand additive manufacturing. Bayne said that SABIC’s acquisition of the stake in Clariant is expected to close in July.

Sponsored by the Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS), NPE2018: The Plastics Show takes place on 7-11 May in Orlando, Florida.

By Zachry Moore

Source: ICIS News

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