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July 9, 2014
Evonik’s new hydrogen peroxide plant officially opened in Jilin
On July 8, Evonik Industries AG (Essen, Germany; www.evonik.com) formally commenced operations at a new hydrogen peroxide plant in Jilin, China. The new production plant has an annual capacity of 230,000 metric tons (m.t.). Evonik has invested over one hundred million euros in the site, thereby raising its current global capacity for H2O2 production to more than 900,000 m.t./yr.
“This investment further consolidates our market leadership for hydrogen peroxide and sees us resolutely pursuing our growth strategy in Asia,” said Klaus Engel, chairman of the Executive Board of Evonik Industries, at the official opening ceremony in Jilin. The event was also attended by high-ranking representatives from politics and the business community.
Evonik will supply H2O2 from Jilin straight to the neighboring propylene oxide plant run by Jishen Chemical Industry Co., which has likewise been newly erected. A long-term supply agreement was signed for this purpose. Jishen will use the H2O2 to manufacture propylene oxide on the basis of the HPPO process. Propylene oxide is used predominantly to make the polyurethane intermediates that are used in the manufacture of products such as upholstery for car seats and furniture or insulation material for the construction and refrigeration industry.
Evonik developed the HPPO process together with ThyssenKrupp Uhde GmbH (now ThyssenKrupp Industrial Solutions, Dortmund, Germany; www.thyssenkrupp-industrial-solutions.com). The new plant in Jilin is the second of its kind. Evonik, ThyssenKrupp Uhde, and a Korean chemicals company as the licensee were the first companies worldwide to use the HPPO process on an industrial scale back in 2008 in Ulsan, South Korea.
To date, H2O2 has been used mainly as a bleaching agent by the textile and pulp industry. The HPPO process now allows this eco-friendly oxidant to also be employed in the direct chemical synthesis of propylene oxide. The benefits of the new method are that it requires much lower investment costs, has high production efficiency, and has excellent environmental compatibility.