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2014-04-04

More sustainable and cost efficient technology

LANXESS successfully concludes pilot phase for completely new butyl rubber production process

Specialty chemicals company LANXESS has successfully concluded the pilot phase for a highly efficient production process for butyl rubber.

In the past seven years, LANXESS worked on a fundamentally new technology for a more sustainable production. An important step in this process was the testing of the new technology in two pilot plants at its production site in Zwijndrecht/Belgium since spring 2012. The production process of butyl rubber is highly complex and requires process steps at very low temperatures and significant usage of steam. The new process technology is significantly more energy and cost efficient.

LANXESS now intends to mothball the pilot plants after successful development of the new production process. A labor consultation process was started locally to align potential impacts on staff with unions and employees.

Butyl rubbers are used in tire inner liners – the innermost, air- and humidity-impermeable layer of a tubeless tire. They keep tire pressure constant over a long period, thus making vehicles safer and ensuring they consume less fuel and therefore produce fewer emissions. Special applications include protective clothing and medical devices. The use of butyl in chewing gum production represents one particularly interesting niche market.

Besides its Zwijndrecht plant LANXESS operates butyl production facilities in Sarnia/Canada and Singapore.

The Butyl Rubber business unit is part of LANXESS’ Performance Polymers segment, which recorded sales of EUR 4.49 billion in fiscal 2013.

LANXESS is a leading specialty chemicals company with sales of EUR 8.3 billion in 2013 and roughly 17,300 employees in 31 countries. The company is currently represented at 52 production sites worldwide. The core business of LANXESS is the development, manufacturing and marketing of plastics, rubber, intermediates and specialty chemicals. LANXESS is a member of the leading sustainability indices Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI World and DJSI Europe) and FTSE4Good as well as CDP’s Climate Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI).

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Udo Erbstößer

Udo Erbstößer
Market Communications

Phone: +49 221 8885 4529

Fax: +49 221 8885 4865

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