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Extracts from Nandini Chemical Journal, Nov 2013


Highlights of Some of the Articles
TARGETS ARE MEANT TO BE ACHIEVED AND NOT SLIPPED Recently, the Union Petroleum Minister has said that India can become self sufficient in energy front in the next few decades by stepping up the oil and gas exploration  efforts and increasing indigenous production. Those who are in the know of things would view such expectations with skepticism. In the recent past, the implementation  of a number of  large and medium projects in the country have been heavily delayed, much beyond the targeted commissioning dates. This could either be due to fixing the completion date targets without taking into consideration the ground realities and constraints or sheer inefficiency of the leadership and management of the projects.  In the case of such delayed projects,  appropriate and detailed explanation for the delays are seldom communicated to the country and the stake holders and rarely accountability for the delays  are fixed. This is so  both in the case of public and private sector. The most glaring example is the Koodankulam nuclear power plant, which has been delayed by several years and the nuclear power has only recently flown to the grid from this much debated project. The Kochi LNG terminal project which is vitally important  for the industrial growth of southern India has been delayed by more than four years and now when the terminal is ready, the pipeline for evacuating the natural gas and supplying it to different destinations in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka are not ready. GAIL India, which is implementing the pipeline project is not sure  when the pipeline project would be completed in view of the agitation by the farmers  in Tamil Nadu and has now approached the judiciary seeking a solution for the impasse. The coal bed methane project in Tamil Nad is another one where the project is bogged down in controversy due  to local agitation. One can say that the  implementing organisations for LNG pipeline project and coal bed methane project have failed to anticipate the possible issues involved  and have rushed with the projects, taking things for granted. Another big project in Tamil Nadu facing protracted delay is the  Nagarjuna Petrochemical project in Cuddalore,which has already been delayed by a few years and several commissioning schedules have been announced without achieving it. Government of India fixed a  target of 22,000 MW  of solar power generation  (both grid based and off grid based) by 2022.  We are nearing end of 2013 now but only less than 2000 MW of solar capacity has been achieved so far .Considering the progress made so far and the pace of implementation, the target of 22,000 MW  of  solar power by 2022  appears to be a tall order. According to Central Electricity Authority, till June 2013, additional hydro power capacity of 132 MW has been commissioned.  This is below the target of around 1200 MW.  According to the power ministry,  more than 90 hydro power projects accounting for     40000 MW are struck due to some or the other regulatory hurdle.  NHPC’s target for 2021-22 is  10,000 MW of hydro power generation.  However, ten projects of capacity 8800 MW by NHPC and its joint venture is awaiting government’s approval.  Three hydro power projects of more than 5000 MW capacity in Arunachal Pradesh, undertaken by Naveen Jindal’s Jindal Power Ltd (JPL) in joint venture are heavily delayed due to land acquisition and funding issues. The steep fall  in the production of natural gas in KG basin by Reliance Industries , much below the targeted level , has upset the earlier forecasted production figures  and several power and other projects in Andhra Pradesh , built on the expectations of natural gas production from KG basin, now  remain shutdown or operating  at low and uneconomic  capacity level. Out of the many oil and gas exploration  blocks awarded so far under  NELP (National Exploration Licencing Policy),  only six blocks are  reported to have started production. Most of the remaining oil and gas blocks have lower reserves than earlier believed and which have now become unviable from the investment point of view. Among the awardees, Reliance Industries  has relinquished 15 blocks in the last two years. During 2004 and 2009, a committee headed by the Union Coal Secretary distributed nearly 150 coal blocks .  However,  mining  happened in only 28 out of the 86 captive coal blocks (private and public)  that were scheduled to take up production during the five year plan period ended  2011-12. And they produced not even half of what was targeted from these blocks. Government of India proposes to issue show cause notice to 32 companies for failing to fulfill the contract obligation, which include private sector companies such as Tata Power and public sector companies  such as SAIL and NTPC. Many other similar examples of heavy delay can be readily pointed out.  The fact is that the enormous investments in such projects and cost escalation due to delay are affecting the originally estimated economics of the projects and are causing huge loss of opportunities for the country.India is paying high price  for such delays, which obviously  should be attributed to  the government’s lack of dynamism in providing clearances and  its inadequate policy initiatives to remove the hurdles,  poor forward planning and lack of efficiency at various levels in the management of projects. It appears that the country is reconciling itself to such delays, as if they are inevitable. The grim fact is that we seem to lack commitment and sense of pride in adequate measure,which are necessary to achieve the schedules.  The country badly needs a new culture where those who fail  to achieve the targets are made accountable and those who achieve the targets are lauded and recognized. The ball is clearly  in the court of top political leadership of the country.
In the early days of refrigeration, the two refrigerants in common use were ammonia and carbon dioxide. Both were considered problematic - ammonia is toxic and carbon dioxide requires extremely high pressures (from around 30 to 200 atmospheres) to operate in a refrigeration cycle. Since it operates on a trans-critical cycle, the compressor outlet temperature is extremely high (around 160 deg C). Hence, the new refrigerants like CFC, HFC, HCFC etc) emerged. The use of CO2 as a refrigerant (R744) is now regaining popularity due to its low environmental impact R744 specification Parameter Value Purity More than 99.99% Moisture Less than 10ppm (weight This article further discussing about salient features, advantages of R744, application sector and global producers.
PU is the largest consumption sector of BDO and other consumption sectors of BDO include PBT, polybutylene succinate (PBS) and GBL, etc., accounting for over 40%. BDO (1,4-butanediol) is used to produce tetrahydrofuran (THF) as well as its polymers, gama-butyrolactone (GBL), N-methyl-2-pyrrolidone (NMP),N-vinyl-2-pyrrolidone (NVP), polyvinyl-2-pyrrolidone (PVP) and so on. The steady increase in demand for polyurethane (PU) and polybutylene terephthalate (PBT) engineering plastics has  contributed to the development of the BDO sector. Product characteristics CAS NO.     110-63-4 Physical state Clear viscous liquid Specific gravity     1.017 The following details are discussed in this article
  • Producer’s specification
  • Product Application
  • Global installed capacity
  • Important global producers and their installed capacity
  • Demand drivers and growth rate
  • Global demand
  • Process technology
L-Lysine Appearance White or light yellow crystalline powder CAS No.   56-87-1 Chemical family Amino acid Molecular formula  C6H14N2O2 L-Lysine HCl Appearance Tan colored granules/ pale granules CAS No.   657-27-2 Molecular formula  C6H14N2O2·HCl  Specification of L-Lysine HCl Assay       99.5% L-Lysine Content, %     78.8 Chlorine (Cl)     19.39%   Crude Protein, %     94.4 HCI content, %   19.7 The following details are discussed in this article
  • Application
  • Indian import
  • Manufacturing process
  • Global scenario
  • Global manufacturers of feed grade L-Lysine
  • Prognosis
Small  scale  industries  have  been one of the major planks of India's industrial and economic development strategy since Independence. In the post independent India and in the  pre liberalisation era ,  it was recognised by the government that small scale units should  form the backbone of the Indian manufacturing sector and should  contribute significantly to the progress of industrial and economic growth in India.  With the well laid out and proactive policies  of the government  , the SSI sector was forging ahead. In the  Indian scenario  where  the investment capability of the average entrepreneur  is not high but  his enthusiasm and drive is  high ,  large number of  young persons in the  middle and even lower income group came forward to set up small scale and tiny enterprises and quite a number of them were reasonably successful.  Several individual technocrats and professionals experimented with their pet and imaginative ideas and  brought great dynamism to the sector.  While there have also  been cases of failure and sickness of the units , the overall benefits and achievements far exceeded the inadequacies and the failures.  The country’s entrepreneurial culture was enormously benefited and several persons in the middle and lower income group, who otherwise would have ended their career as just employees, ventured into the enterprises and gained enormous personal satisfaction and confidence   and in the process doing good to the national economy. Importance of small scale industries for Indian economy is further discussed in this article.
Floating power plants could become a unique national project;  if successful, the world’s main energy supplier. The floating atomic plant has generated much interest worldwide. Floating nuclear power plant, as opposed to stationary nuclear power plants, is brought to the right place where it supplies power or heat for the required time, and then it floats away, without leaving any damage to the ecosystem. In a pioneering move, Russia is set to build the world’s first floating nuclear power plant, which could fructify an idea that was first experimented with by the US over half a century ago. Unfazed by green activists, Russia began constructing the first floating nuclear power plant, Academician Lomonosov, in 2009, at the Baltic factory in St. Petersburg. The equipment, including nuclear reactors, is being installed on the readymade framework of the ship. The ship has a displacement of 21.5 tonne and has a team of 69 people is required to service it. Above title is further discussed in this article.
Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserves, which was formed in 2006, has appointed SBI Capital Markets Ltd. to look at alternate funding options for filling the caverns. The cost of the first phase increased two  and a half times since 2005, a parliamentary committee said in a report in May,2013. India expects to build 90 days of inventory by 2020. Above subject is further discussed in this article.
Despite good accretion to reserves year after year, public-sector ONGC is finding itself in the quagmire of stagnant production, primarily because major discoveries are held up in deep-water blocks. Since new discoveries have come on stream slower than ONGC  wanted, producing fields are being tapped with aggression, forcing their quick march to exhaustion. ONGC has created a ‘Centre of Delivery’ for HP/HT zones in Chennai, because the major fields are identified in the KG Basin and three in the Cauvery basin. The reserve-replacement ratio has been greater than 1 since 2005-06, indicating that the discovered resources more than replaces production in any particular year. It went as high as 1.84 in 2012-13. Yet, the production numbers have hovered around the 51-53 tonne of oil equivalent (mtoe) band.’ This article further discussing about ONGC’s production trend.
PLANT CLOSURES The article discusses the following closure plans
  • Arkema expected to close phthalates site in France
SAFETY AND ACCIDENT PAGE The article discusses the following accident happened in Mumbai
  • Oil spill off Mumbai
ANTI DUMPING PAGE The antidumping measures introduced in  the various countries in the last few weeks on the following products are discussed
  • Electrical insulator
  • Solar grade polysilicon
  • Nucleotide food additives
  • Tertiary Butylhydroquinone
  • Cefadroxil monohydrate
  • Paracetamol
  • EU protests against India’s penal import duties
NEWS ROUND UP- INTERNATIONAL The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed
  • Xanthan gum plant in Saudi Arabia
  • Polyurethane systems house at Geismar site,USA
  • Ammonia plant at Victoria, TX,USA
  • Toray’s carbon fiber projects
  • Carbon fiber
  • Chloroprene unit in Armenia
  • Bicarbonate plant in Thailand
  • BASF’s high performance Ultramid® in China
  • Chlorinated PVC
CHINA NEWS BAN ON NEW PROJECTS TO TACKLE OVERCAPACITY IN CHINA China will tackle chronic overcapacity problems in sectors such as steel and cement by blocking approvals for new projects and by making better use of the market, according to a new plan issued by the State Council. It would also set higher environmental and quality standards for industries and encourage the private sector to play a role in restructuring oversized firms. China  would set higher environmental and quality standards for industries and encourage the private sector to play a role in restructuring oversized firms. As well as blocking new approvals, the new plan will seek to absorb overcapacity by stimulating domestic demand, and will also offer tax incentives to encourage firms to relocate plants overseas. The above subject is further discussed in this article. METHANOL TO OLEFIN PLANT EXPERTISE OF WISON ENGINEERING ENTERPRISE,CHINA On  26 September 2013 – Wison Engineering Services Co. Ltd announced the successful initial start-up of its designed methanol-to-olefins (MTO)plant featuring the Company’s proprietary technology. The MTO plant, designed by Wison Engineering Ltd., an indirect non-wholly owned subsidiary of the Group, is located in the Nanjing Chemical Industry Park. It has successfully produced ethylene and propylene products, with  purity of 99.98% and 99.8% for ethylene and propylene products respectively, marking the first commercialization of Wison Engineering’s olefin separation technology for MTO plants. The above subject is further discussed in this article. COAL TO GAS SCENARIO IN CHINA Coal to gas uses coal as raw material to produce synthetic natural gas through gasification and purification. So far, not a single coal-to-gas plant has started commercial production in China. Around 2010, a number of enterprises planned coal-to-gas projects and the total planned capacity reached more than 30 billion m3 per annum. National Development and Reform Commission has approved four coal-to-gas projects. The above subject is further discussed in this article. The recent developments on the following products/events  in China are discussed
  • Coke-oven gas to synthetic ammonia project
  • Bermocoll cellulose derivatives plant
  • MDI
  • Rare earth production
  • Qinghai Provincial Mining, Co., Ltd., Selects UNIPOL™ PP Technology
  • UOP technology for isobutylene plant in China
NEWS ROUND UP - INDIA The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed
  • LAB
  • CNG cylinder export trend
  • Proposed Acetic Acid Project
  • Rare Earths project in India
TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENTS BIOBASED ACRYLIC ACID - TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT EFFORTS OPX Biotechnologies (OPXBio) a Boulder, CO–based industrial biotechnology firm working with Dow Chemical to bring biobased acrylic acid to market, expects to begin a major scale-up of process technology in 2014 with commercial scale operations targeted for 2017. The company is set to begin its final validation step—moving from a 3,000-liter fermentation unit at Michigan Bioinstitute’s East Lansing facility to a 25,000 to 30,000-liter fermentation tank in 2014. The above subject is further discussed in this article. ETHYLENE TO ACRYLIC PROCESS DEVELOPED BY NOVOMER Novomer (Waltham, MA) has won a $5-million grant from the Department of Energy’s Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative to develop a new process for production of acrylic acid from ethylene and carbon dioxide (CO2). The company has partnered with a major industrial gas producer on the project. The interest has come from companies making acrylic acid that want a lower-cost route to do it and then also companies [with] ethylene oxide that want to make higher-value derivatives beyond monoethylene glycol. The above subject is further discussed in this article.
  • The recent developments on the following product is discussed
  • LNG technology & equipment
AGRO CHEMICAL PAGE The recent developments on the following products are updated
  • Extraction of coconut sap (NEERA)
  • Use of straw in biomass power plants
PHARMA PAGE NEW MALARIA VACCINE  -  RTS,S VACCINE The results of trials published in Durban, South Africa, showed that the RTS,S vaccine developed by GlaxoSmithKline nearly halved the cases of malaria experienced by children aged between five and seven months and cut the number of cases in babies aged 6 to 12 weeks by a quarter. The treatment's protection lasted for 18 months, although it waned slightly over time. Every year, around 660,000 people die from malaria, most of them small children under the age of five. There are about 219 million cases of the disease a year worldwide. The above subject is further discussed in this article. ENERGY PAGE UPCOMING SOLAR POWER PROJECTS IN TAMIL NADU A number of solar projects are coming up in Tamil Nadu. Most of the investors are textile businessmen, who want to avail themselves of the ‘accelerated depreciation’ benefit — which allows them to depreciate the solar plant by 80 per cent in the first year. These businessmen used to put up windmills to get accelerated depreciation. Ever since the sop was scrapped for wind power projects, the businessmen are turning to solar. Around this time last year, the total installed, grid connected solar power capacity in Tamil Nadu was 15 MW. The figure will at least triple by March,2014. Forthcoming solar power projects in Tamil Nadu is further discussed in this article. PROSPECTS OF KG-D6 BLOCK OF RELIANCE INDUSTRIES The KG-D6 fields, which began gas production in April 2009, hit a peak of 69.43 mmscmd in March 2010 before water and sand ingress led to shutting down of more than one-third of the wells. The main producing fields in the block are D-1 and 3, which produce around 11 mmscmd and 3 mmscmd from the MA fields. The KG-D6 gas volume was 14 mmscmd in the second quarter of FY14 versus 15.3 mmscmd in the first quarter and 28.5 mmscmd in in the second quarter of FY13. The oil ministry will take back 80% of KG-D6 block, allotted to Reliance Industries including five discoveries, because  Reliance Industries did not abide by deadlines. Prospects of K-G-D6 block of Reliance Industries is further discussed in this article. The recent developments are discussed in the following articles.
  • Ageing wells of ONGC
  • Global non energy companies out to harness solar power
  • Shale gas projects of Bharat petroleum
  • Price Details
  • Ketone peroxides
  • Ex-Factory Price Of Chemicals In China In September 2013
  • Tenders
  • Chemicals Imported At The Chennai Port During The Month Of September  2013
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