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christa.jpg (5628 bytes) Chemical Industry News Editor Christa Semko
Every two weeks, Christa will bring you the latest chemical industry news from around the world.  If you have a press release that you'd like to share with us, please mail it to us through our online contact form here.

Dateline: February 20, 2007

Technically Speaking

North America

Air Products will expand its industrial gas production facilities at both its Ashland, Kentucky and Reidsville, North Carolina facilities.  The expansions will help meet demand from industrial gas customers, particularly the oilfield services market as well as electronics, metals manufacturing and heat treating, and food processing.
Fires have affected Chemcentral’s distribution facility in Kansas City, Missouri.  Explosions occurred, but the cause of the fires is still unknown.  The site housed a wide assortment of chemicals including toluene, mineral spirits and naphtha. 
Organic Semiconductors
BASF Future Business has entered into a licensing and joint development agreement with Rieke Metals, Inc. in Lincoln, Nebraska, to start the industrial-scale production and sales of organic semiconductors (polythiophenes).  The organic semiconductors will be used by customers in the printed electronics industry.  Polythiophenes production will occur in BASF’s existing European or U.S. production facilities.
Coke Plant
Sunoco, Inc. plans to build a second Sun Coke Company Heat Recovery coke manufacturing plant in Haverhill, Ohio.  Construction will begin later this quarter with a total investment of $230 million planned.  The facility will be fully owned and operated by Sun Coke and have the ability to produce approximately 550,000 tons of blast furnace coke/year.  The facility is designed to capture heat from heat recovery ovens to produce supply steam to a 67 megawatt turbine, providing a net average of 46 megawatts of power into the regional power market.  Full production is expected about 18 months after construction begins.


Joint Venture
Huntsman and NMB created a Russian-based joint venture, ZAO Huntsman, to make and sell polyurethane systems to the adhesives, coatings, elastomers and insulation markets.  ZAO Huntsman will be based at NMG’s current headquarters in Obninsk, near Moscow.

Corning will expand the capacity of large-size glass substrates for active-matrix LCD panels at its facility in Shizuoka, Japan.  The $160 million investment should begin production in mid-2008.  The expansion will help Corning respond to increasing demand for flat-screen televisions.

Lyondell Chemical Company plans to invest $20 million to expand the production capability for ultrafine TiO2 at its Millennium Inorganic Chemicals manufacturing facility in Thann, France.  Ultrafine TiO2 is used for numerous catalytic applications including environmental catalysts for NOx reduction, Claus catalysis, post-combustion catalysis for gasoline diesel engines and fine chemical catalysis.

NF3 Production Facility
Air Products has begun the first phase of its nitrogen trifluoride (NF3) plant in Ulsan, Korea.  The new facility will be operated by Air Products Korea Electronics and will produce more than 500 metric tons/year when completed later this year.  NF3 is used as a chamber cleaning gas when manufacturing semiconductors, flat panel displays and other electronic devices.  NF3 offers customers significant reductions in emissions, up to 30% increase in throughput, longer chamber life and faster clean rates when compared with competing devices.  In addition, it’s stable and nonflammable, making it safe to transport, store and deliver.       

Technically Speaking

What is a "metering flange"?

"What I've always identified as Metering Flanges are special, machined pipe flanges designed to contain a pre-designed and machined orifice plate for the measurement of a gas or liquid flow within a pipeline. The flanges contain pre-drilled and tapped holes for measuring the needed, correct upstream and downstream pressures such that they can be sent to the related flow indicator or controller.

By predesigning these flanges, a plant engineer can rest assured that the related orifice plate is correctly and always centered; he also is assured that the correct pressure sites are probed. This removes a lot of potential installation errors from occuring with respect to using orifice plates.

Art Montemayor via Forums

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