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April 24, 2013

Rennovia launches HMD as next product, enabling 100% bio-based nylon-6,6

Gerald Ondrey

Rennovia, Inc. (Menlo Park, Calif.;, announced at the PCI 6th American Nylon Symposium that it has successfully demonstrated production of hexamethylenediamine (HMD) from widely available, renewable feedstocks. Coupled with Rennovia’s previously announced renewable adipic acid, this enables for the first time the production of 100% bio-based nylon-6,6 from monomers derived from bio-renewable feedstocks using chemical catalytic technology.

Rennovia’s HMD process employs proprietary catalyst technology developed using its advanced high-throughput catalyst discovery and development platform. “Practicing our HMD process at demonstration scale is the important next milestone for the company,” says Robert Wedinger, president and CEO of Rennovia. Production costs for Rennovia’s bio-based HMD are projected to be 20–25% below that of conventional petroleum-based HMD, with a significantly lower per-pound capital cost. Additional projected benefits include a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions compared to conventional petroleum-derived HMD. “The development of our HMD process further validates Rennovia’s unique ability to create technological breakthroughs in the production of bio-based chemical products, with projected significant cost advantages vs. products produced from petroleum-based feedstocks” adds Wedinger.

Over 3 billion pounds of HMD is currently produced per year from petroleum-derived propylene or butadiene, representing a global market of more than $4 billion. It is used in the manufacture of nylon-6,6 for resin and fiber applications, as well as in polyurethanes. These are used in a wide range of consumer goods, including interior, exterior and under-the-hood automotive parts, coatings, tires, shoes, apparel, and carpeting.


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