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Comment Sustainability

Solvay to decarbonize cyclopentanone production unit in France

By Mary Page Bailey |

Solvay S.A. (Brussels, Belgium) has begun a process of decarbonizing the cyclopentanone unit of its Melle plant in France. Through an agreement with an agricultural cooperative for the next fifteen years, the entire cyclopentanone production already relies solely on biomethane gas, a green source of energy.

The cooperative built a facility to convert waste biomass into18 GWh of renewable natural gas (RNG) per year, which Solvay has committed to purchase for its Melle plant.

“Since cyclopentanone is used as a building block for so many fragrance applications, such as jasmine, we are committed to producing it in the most sustainable way,” said Guillaume Meunier, Flavor & Fragrance Global Market Director for Solvay Aroma Performance. “Powering the Melle plant with biomethane gas is a part of our Solvay ONE Planet initiative, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 26% by 2030.”

Solvay commercializes two grades of cyclopentanone – one for the fragrance market and one ultra-high purity version for the electronics market, both manufactured at its Melle plant.

In fragrance applications, cyclopentanone is used as a building block mainly in methyl dihydro jasmonate (MDJ), which provides a floral scent of blooming jasmine flowers. Other aroma compounds derived from cyclopentanone include an entire range of delta-lactones, which offer a variety of creamy and fruity notes.

Cyclopentanone is also also used in the electronics market as a solvent during several steps in the manufacturing process of semiconductors.

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