Polymers Petrochemicals Preforms Polyester 13-04-2019

Venezuela has sent 1 million barrels of crude to Cuba despite pressure from the United States to suspend these shipments, Reuters reports citing a PDVSA document as well as shipping data.

The U.S. has been trying to plug Venezuela’s oil exports through sanctions on PDVSA, which have effectively stopped the flow of Venezuelan oil to U.S. refiners, and through a suspension of diluent exports to Venezuela. The latest was sanctioning 23 vessels and two companies involved in shipments of oil to Cuba.

Alfredo Prince, commercial director for Braskem Idesa in Mexico City, shows the reverse vending machine t Plastimagen 2019.

Mexico City — Braskem Idesa is known for making virgin polyethylene. But the firm also wants people to start thinking of the company more in terms of sustainability.

To help drive that point across, Braskem Idesa made a splash around Plastimagen with the placement of 15 reverse vending machines accepting both used PET bottles and aluminum cans.

The kiosks, which include Braskem Idesa signage, are the work of a company called BioBox, which provides them as a way for recyclers to earn points that can be used toward purchases or discounts. The points also can be donated to charity.

The image depicts the structure of MHETase bound to a non-hydrolyzable PET-derived ligand (MHETA). Symbolic polymer fibers connect MHETA to a typical PET bottle, indicating the large potential of enhanced PETase and MHETase variants in enzymatic plastic recycling. In this regard, our structural data facilitated the generation of initial MHETase variants with improved activity and extended substrate specificity. Our findings thus represent an important step on the way to an improved PETase / MHETase system where PET recycling is decoupled from its dependence on crude oil in an energy-saving and sustainable manner. Credit: Martin Künsting/HZB

A research team from the University of Greifswald and Helmholtz-Zentrum-Berlin (HZB) has solved the molecular structure of the enzyme MHETase at BESSY II. MHETase was discovered in bacteria, and together with a second enzyme, PETase, is able to break down the widely used plastic PET into its basic building blocks. This 3D structure already allowed the researchers to produce a MHETase variant with optimized activity in order to use it, together with PETase, for a sustainable recycling of PET.

  • Retech to exhibit interesting innovations at ITMA 201912

Switzerland-based Retech Aktiengesellschaft will be exhibiting interesting innovations under the motto of ‘blue thread’ at the forthcoming international textile machinery exhibition ITMA 2019, to be held from June 20-26. The 3 innovations at the forefront would be yarn tension sensors, heated godet rolls and temperature regulation and transmission line.

This would be the third time that Retech would be showcasing at ITMA after its participation in 2011 in Barcelona, and 2015 in Milano. In addition to the three innovations displayed, there would be further new things to be discovered on stand B109 in hall 7.

Leeds-based LVF has become one of the first packaging companies in the UK to manufacture and sell products made from BreakdownPET, a biodegradable and fully recyclable plastic material that is designed to quickly, naturally, and safely decompose in landfill.

LVF added BreakdownPET to its offering late last year, and already Podpak, a highly innovative, single-service specialist from Bath, has made the switch to it.

Nefilatek, a Montreal-based startup specializing in manufacturing recycled filament, has developed 3D printing filaments made from 100% recycled plastic.

The company runs a Kickstarter page, where early adopters can choose between two types of filaments: Nefila HIPS (High Impact Polystyrene) Black, and Nefila PC (Polycarbonate), which comes with reusable spool supports and eco-friendly packaging.

With its new filaments, Nefilatek is aiming to provide a “safe alternative solution for makers, designers and manufacturers” that cuts down on the amount of plastic used and wasted in 3D printing.

Electronic components must be protected from disruptions caused by electromagnetic waves. Experts from Freudenberg Performance Materials and Freudenberg Sealing Technologies are working together on ways to provide shielding with plastic housings. In the future, they could partially replace the aluminium versions that have dominated the market until now, the company reports.

Fields of electromagnetic interference often form where electric current flows. When the flow is powerful, in high-performance electric powertrains, for example, the strength of these fields increases, and they can disrupt the signal flow in microprocessors and transmitter-receiver systems.

One proven remedy is the encasement of electric components in housings made of a conductive metal. So far, aluminium has been the main tried-and-tested material for this. But its use substantially increases the proportion of aluminium in electric vehicles.

Projects in the US and Indonesia opt to turn hard-to-process materials into fuels

Local officials are beginning to opt for the chemical conversion of plastics into fuels as a means of processing difficult plastic waste. The City of Phoenix is working with Salt Lake City–based start-up Renewlogy to build a conversion plant. And the British firm Plastic Energy has a deal to build plants using its technology in West Java, Indonesia.

Renewlogy, which has pyrolysis technology for converting waste plastics into fuels, will form a joint venture with a local waste management firm to build its plant. The plant will process plastics coded 3 through 7—materials such as polystyrene and polypropylene that aren’t mechanically recycled as widely as polyethylene terephthalate and high-density polyethylene, which are coded 1 and 2, respectively. The plant will have the capacity to process about 10 metric tons per day of the material into 60 barrels of liquid fuel.

The effect from the outage at Iran’s WestEthylene Pipeline is keenly felt inpolyethylene (PE)-deficit China, where domesticprices are on an upward trajectory amid supplydisruptions from the US-sanctioned country.

Iran, the second largest polyethylene (PE)supplier to China after Saudi Arabia, is in the 
process of fixing its mega ethylene pipelinethat feeds several petrochemical plants in thecountry, following a blast early this week.

With reduced volumes, domestic polyethylene(PE) import prices in China have increased andthere is more room for prices to move upwards.

US polyethylene (PE) imports into Europe are not so freely available for prompt delivery, but new offers are being made for delivery in June and July.

Planned, unplanned outages prop up values

Some PE grades have posted a sharp lift in prices in April, as availability has tightened.

C4 (butene based) with linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) – a predominantly imported grade – has been particularly affected.

Average ICIS spot prices have risen by over 7.5% since February.

Local sources said that US production was up in March, following a period when not much was available to European traders, and there are new offers for June/July delivery.

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