Global Information Source for Chemical, Pharmaceutical and Allied Industries
  • +91-44-43511945

  • info@nandinichemical.com

Journals

Extracts from Nandini Chemical Journal, June 2011

OFFSHORE LNG|INDIAN POTASH|STYRENIC BLOCK COPOLYMER|ISOPHORONE
Highlights of Some of the Articles

TALK OF THE MONTH : FUEL PRICE TORTUOUS PRESENT AND BLEAK FUTURE
HAS THE BUSINESS CONFIDENCE COME DOWN AMONGST INDIAN CHEMICAL INDUSTRIES ?
TRENDS AND HAPPENINGS IN CHEMICAL INDUSTRY IN CHINA : PROCEEDINGS OF A PROGRAMME AT CHENNAI
WORLD’S LARGEST FLOATING OFFSHORE LNG FACILITY
GLOBAL POTASH CAPACITY EXPANSIONS
STYRENIC BLOCK COPOLYMER(SBC) - RECENT GLOBAL DEVELOPMENTS
SPOT LIGHT ON SPECIALITY CHEMICAL - ISOPHORONE
BLEACHING POWDER - INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITY
INDIAN VANILLA INDUSTRY IN DIRE STRAITS
INDIAN POTASH SCENARIO
PLANT CLOSURES
ANTI DUMPING PAGE
OTHER FEATURES
OTHER ARTICLES

TALK OF THE MONTH

FUEL PRICE TORTUOUS PRESENT AND BLEAK FUTURE

The Government of India has now once again increased the price of petrol, saying that such increase is inevitable due to the global crude oil price rise.

The fluctuation and uncertainty about the global price behaviour of crude oil has been well realised all over the world several years back and many governments particularly in advanced countries have taken up purposive and efficient efforts to reduce the use level of crude oil and optimize energy use pattern.

The unfortunate fact is that the Government of India has done little by way of implemented measures to face the impending energy crisis.

It is sad that many meaningful suggestions to avert impending energy crisis suggested by scientists and technologists have not been given due consideration by the Government of India. The immediate example is the neglect of the jatropha bio fuel opportunity.

The jatropha bio fuel project with its multiple advantages would have moved enormously forward and brought down the impact of the crude oil dependence to significant extent , if the Government of India has provided the adequate incentives and price subsidy and it has ploughed resources in research and development to optimise the cultivation practices of jatropha and improve the extraction procedures. On the other hand, like being penny wise and pound foolish, Government of India refused to provide price subsidy to jatropha oil that would enable the jatropha industry to get reasonable income. In the process , The Government of India killed the huge enthusiasm developed in the country for jatropha industry amongst investors. Many jatropha fuel projects built in the country at different levels now remain closed. How can the government escape the responsibility for such dismal jatropha oil scenario ?

Government of India has been focussing on nuclear power projects ignoring the several adverse factors , apart from the fact that the price of the nuclear power would be well over Rs. 18/- per unit which the buyers cannot afford.

Many in India are convinced that the nuclear power projects would be a burden on the India’s economy. But, the Prime Minister is not listening.

We need to find out innovative solutions appropriate to the need of India to overcome the impending energy crisis.

The multinational companies are feverishly working to develop algae bio fuel and Government of India has done practically nothing to encourage R & D activity in algae bio fuel in India. India has huge natural advantages with regard to the production and growth of algae but sustained and time bound R & D efforts are needed. Why has the Government of India not thought it necessary to allot the required fund of around Rs. 30,000 million to create a separate organization with team of dedicated scientists and engineers with public private sector cooperation to develop the algae bio fuel technology ? Certainly, Indian technologists have the capability to deliver results but it is the duty of the Government to create the appropriate condition and climate.

Not only is India now being burdened with repeated price increase of petrol and fuel but also burdened with the situation where there is no remedial action plans. While the present time is one of tortuous fuel price scenario , the future is extremely bleak Government of India has a job on its hand.

HAS THE BUSINESS CONFIDENCE COME DOWN AMONGST INDIAN CHEMICAL INDUSTRIES?

It is now well recognized that the pace of capacity creation in Indian chemical manufacturing sector have slowed down considerably in recent years.

India is increasingly becoming import destination for several chemicals. Quite a few number of Indian manufacturers have stopped manufacturing of chemicals or refrained from capacity expansion and have started importing the products themselves for marketing them in India using their existing trade channels. This is an alarming signal that should not be ignored ,

Alarming forecast have been made that Indian reserves of coal and crude oil would last only for a few decades more, with no worthwhile new discoveries being made to the level of requirement. The fall in the production of natural gas from the Krishna –Godavari basin is a huge blow for Indian industries, with the Government of India now restricting the supply of natural gas from Krishna- Godavari Basin only to selected core sector.

Obviously, the business confidence amongst Indian chemical industries have been shaken, in the light of ever increasing price of petroleum fuel and petroleum feedstock as well as the uncertainty on the energy front. Lack of confidence to compete with international players even in the Indian market appears to be hanging heavily in the mind set of the Indian chemical companies, while considering new projects.

What is particularly causing concern is the fact that the Government of India appears to remain clueless. It has failed to initiate any worthwhile action plans to overcome the impending energy crisis in India with the urgency that they deserve. It has not planned for any alternative energy sources like shale gas, jatropha etc. in a time bound manner and appear to be moving at snail’s pace.

No one in India appears to be expecting that any spectacular development would take place in the next few years in India on the energy front. The Government’s target for setting up solar energy and nuclear power are also seen with misgivings.as the . unit cost of producing nuclear power and solar power would be around Rs.18 per unit which would be beyond the buying capacity of the Indian consumers .The nuclear power projects particularly would result in huge subsidy burden and several other issues.

Government of India , in particular the Union Ministry of Chemicals & Petrochemicals should accept the blame for their failure to provide appropriate guidelines to the Indian Chemical Industry in tune with the priority and policy approach of the government, based on the resources in India as well as the global and regional economic and political ground realities.

It is not possible for the chemical industries, belonging to public sector or private sector, to plan and implement their strategies for growth, without knowing clearly about the policy direction of the government and its incentive and taxation policy measures.

With the production of crude oil and natural gas as well as the coal virtually stagnating in India and with India increasingly becoming import dependent (vulnerable to international price cartels) for its energy needs, an U turn in the direction of growth of the Indian chemical industry is called for. Obviously, India has to focus on its strength and opportunities to move away from areas of investment where it has weakness and where it faces threat.

India has essentially agro based economy and it also has considerable deposits of various minerals, apart from strength provided by the long sea coast and different climate and soil conditions.

It is certainly possible to build industrial and economic activities based on such strength without unduly depending on petroleum feedstock..

However, it is necessary that the Government of India should realize that it has the responsibility and duty to provide firm guidelines on the growth strategy for India which is not done adequately at present.

This lack of pro active approach of the Government of India is not only costing chemical industry dearly but is also driving away the confidence level amongst the Indian chemical industry professionals and project promoters

TRENDS AND HAPPENINGS IN CHEMICAL INDUSTRIES IN CHINA
PROCEEDINGS OF THE INFORMATIVE PROGRAMME AT CHENNAI

Chemical Industries Association, an Apex Body representing the cross section of chemical industries all over India organized an informative programme on “Trends and Happenings in Chemical Industries in China “ on 20th May 2011 at Chennai.

The programme was inaugurated by Mr. P.N.Devarajan, former Chairman of Hindustan Organic Chemicals Ltd. and presently Director in several corporate bodies.

Following were the key speakers during the programme

* Mr.P.K.N.Panickar, President, Chemical Industries Association and former President , Indian Institute of Chemical Engineers

*Mr.N.S.Venkataraman, Director, Nandini Consultancy Centre Pvt Ltd.,Chennai

*Mr. Swaminathan Venkataraman, Director, Nandini Consultancy (S) Pte.Ltd. Singapore

Valedictory address for the programme was delivered by Mr.K.N.Venkatasubramanian, former Managing Director of Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. and presently Director in several corporate bodies.

The programme was attended by executives from several leading organizations including Thermax Ltd., Thirumalai Chemicals Ltd., Mecon Ltd., and others.

The topics discussed in the programme were the following.

Session I Introduction To China

Session II Growth Models For Chemical Industries In China

Session III Chemical Industries In China - Facts And Figures

Session IV Capacity Creation - Is China Over Doing It?- Case Studies

Session V Coal Chemical Industry In China

Session VI Technology Imports And R&D Thrust In China

Session VII Why Multinational Companies Are Attracted Towards China?

Session VIII Case Study – A Growth Strategy For State Owned Enterprise China National Chem

Session IX Learnings For India

During the programme on”Trends and Happenings in Chemical Industries in China”, at Chennai, India the coal chemical scenario in China was extensively discussed.

WORLD’S LARGEST FLOATING OFFSHORE LNG FACILITY

Shell’s decision to make Floating Liquefied Natural Gas (FLNG) a reality culminates more than a decade of research and development. It builds on the company’s extensive know-how in offshore production, gas liquefaction, LNG shipping, and delivering major projects that integrate the gas value chain—from wellhead to burner.

The Prelude FLNG project will be the first Australian upstream project in which Shell is the operator.

The details of the project is highlighted in the article

GLOBAL POTASH CAPACITY EXPANSIONS

This article discusses the expansion proposal for the following global players:

  •  K+S, Germany
  •  Israel Chemicals Ltd./ Iberpotash, Spain
  •  Cleveland Potash
  •  Dead Sea Works, Israel
STYRENIC BLOCK COPOLYMER (SBC) - RECENT GLOBAL DEVELOPMENT

Styrene-isoprene-styrene (SIS), styrene-butadiene-styrene (SBS), and styrene-ethylene/butylene-styrene (SEBS) block copolymers are known collectively as SBCs.

General details

Styrenic Block Copolymers (SBCs) are the largest-volume category of thermoplastic elastomers.

SBCs consist of at least three blocks, namely two hard polystyrene end blocks and one soft, elastomeric (polybutadiene, polyisoprene, either or not hydrogenated) midblock. It is essential that the hard and soft blocks are immiscible, so that, on a microscopic scale, the polystyrene blocks form separate domains in the rubber matrix, thereby providing physical cross links to the rubber.

Being thermoplastic elastomers, SBCs possess the mechanical properties of rubbers and the processing characteristics of thermoplasts.

Upon raising the temperature above the 100 deg.C of polystyrene or on bringing the material into a hydrocarbon solvent, the polystyrene domains disintegrate and the SBCs become processable as thermoplasts. When solidified, SBCs exhibit good elastomeric qualities. Tensile strength is higher than for unreinforced vulcanised rubbers. Elongation at break ranges from 500 % to 1200 % and resilience is comparable to that of vulcanised rubbers. Melt viscosity is comparable to that of thermoplasts, such as polystyrene and polypropylene.

This article discusses the following details :

  • Applications
  • Global demand
  • Global demand pattern
  • Growth in demand
  • Regional market pattern
  • Process for SBC
  • Global players
  • Profile of major players
SPOT LIGHT ON SPECIALITY CHEMICAL - ISOPHORONE

Isophorone is α,β-unsaturated cyclic ketone,that is used as a solvent and as an intermediate in organic synthesis.

CAS number 78-59-1
Appearance Clear, Colorless Liquid
Molecular formula C9H14O
Other names 3,5,5-Trimethyl-2-cyclo-hexen-1-one, Isoacetopherone

This article discusses the following details :

  • Stability
  • Storage
  • Product specification
  • Product applications
  • Process
  • Important global players and their profile
  • Indian producers
  • Indian Annual imports and countrywise import details of Isophorone and its derivatives
  • Indian Annual exports and countrywise export details of Isophorone and its derivatives
  • Prognosis
BLEACHING POWDER - INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITY

Stable Bleaching powder is a mixture of hemi, di basic calcium hypochlorite, calcium hydroxide, calcium chloride, calcium chlorate etc.

Chemical name Chloride of Lime or Chlorinated lime
Appearance White to slightly yellowish white powder ; Free from hard lumps and any visible impurities ; Dry and free flowing
Solubility Partially soluble in water
Decomposition Decomposes on heating

Packaging

Stable Bleaching powder is packed in laminated HDPE bags with alkathene liner/alkathene bags, wrapped with paper bags of capacity 25 kg / 50 kg.

Specifications

 
Property Grade I

Grade 2

Available chlorine

34.0% min

32.0% min
Stability 1/15 max. 1/11 max.
Moisture 0.3%max. 0.5%max.
Particle size(passing through 1.70mm IS Sieve) 99.5%min. 99.0%min.

This article discusses the following details :

  • Applications
  • Indian annual export details during the last four years and countrywise exports
  • Indian producers
  • Production level of selected players
  • Indian production level
  • Indian demand
  • Growth rate in demand
  • Global scenario
  • Process outline
  • Raw material requirements
  • Prognosis
INDIAN VANILLA INDUSTRY IN DIRE STRAITS

This article discusses the following details :

  • Production
  • Demand
  • Global scenario
  • Price
  • Indian export
  • Problems of spurious pesticides
INDIAN POTASH SCENARIO

The article discusses the plans for closure of selected unit by the following player

  • 18 coal-fired units close
  • Eastman to discontinue production of two phthalate plasticizers
  • Braskem: Venezuelan PE complex suspended, PP project ‘under evaluation’
  • Bayer abandons MIC Restart
ANTI DUMPING PAGE

The antidumping measures introduced in the various countries in the last few weeks on the following products are discussed:

  • Rubber chemicals
  • PVC paste resin
  • Polypropylene
  • Metronidazole
OTHER FEATURES

NEWS ROUND UP

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed:

INTERNATIONAL

  • Adipic acid
  • Huntsman PU project
  • Ethanol biofuels business of BP
  • Methyl methacrylate
  • Valeraldehyde / DPHP facility
  • Cellulose derivatives plant
  • Clariant buys U.S. De-Icing Company
  • Aluminum alkyls project in Saudi Arabia
  • Bio-based propylene glycol
  • Bio based butanol
  • Micro crystalline cellulose
  • Natural colours

INDIA

  • SI Group buys Indian resins business
  • Leather tanneries in Tamil Nadu facing difficult times

CHINA NEWS

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed:

  • Aniline Facility
  • Coal-to-olefins JV in China
  • MDI integrated projects of BASF
  • Corn polyols project
  • Aramid
  • MEG import
  • AkzoNobel’s Eka Chemicals opens new colloidal silica plant
  • Solutia begins producing EVA encapsulants in China
  • Spandex Plant Expansion
  • Sodium Sulfide
  • Coal-to-Gas Plant in Xinjiang
  • China Discourages Expansion Of Phosphate Fertilizer Capacity
  • Coal Chemical Industry Policy Of Government Of China
  • Status of shale gas projects in China
    • Assessment of potentials in China
    • Exploration efforts
    • Shale gas production

TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENTS

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed:

  • Electricity from bugs
  • Syngas to MEG project
  • Nanotech Licensing
  • Slaugher house waste turns into fodder
  • Oil from food waste
  • Titanium dioxide
  • Waste to gas

PHARMA PAGE

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed:

  • Calcium phosphate cement for dental, orthopaedic applications
  • Cephalosporin

ENERGY PAGE

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed:

  • Shortage of coal supply hits power capacity addition
  • Waste to Energy plant in Malaysia
  • Electricity from hot geothermal fluids
  • Highly efficient solar product
  • Progress of Indian power projects

ENVIRONMENTAL PAGE

The recent developments on the following events is discussed:

  • Fear of warming peaks as Co2 emissions at record high

PRICE DETAILS

Global price trends on the following products are provided :

  • Surfactants
  • Glycidyl ester, hydroxyl acrylate monomer
  • Higher aldehydes
  • Natural gas prices in North America
  • Ethyl vinyl acetate / LDPE
OTHER ARTICLES
  • Algae oil projects in the world
  • Sort Out Issues, Power Project Promoters Tell Govt.
  • Carbon black projects of Cabot
  • Polysilicon projects of Wacker Chemie
  • Coal Shortage Prompts Change In Power Plant design
  • Tender
  • Chemicals Imported At The Chennai Port During The Month Of February 2011
ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES IN SHALE GAS DRILLING

A blowout at a gas well in popular camping spot, in the woods of the Punxsutawney hunt club, also in Clearfield County in Pennsylvania, USA, had shot a 23-metre (75ft) combustible gusher of gas and toxic waste water into the air.

It took the gas company, EOG Resources, 16 hours to control the well and the authorities had to carry out an evacuation.

The US government is now beginning to undertake a review of the chemicals that are used in hydraulic fracturing or "fracking", the relatively recent technique used to release vast stores of natural gas buried underground.

The technique uses millions of litres of water, sand and a battery of chemicals – including carcinogens such as benzene – injected at high pressure to fracture the rock and release the stored gas.

Environmental groups have exposed several persistent dangers: leaks in wells owing to faulty casing or migration through layers or rock; breaches in the above-ground tanks meant to store used drilling chemicals; and a rise in air emissions.

This article discusses the following details :

  • Carbon foot print of shale gas
  • Drilling in Pennsylvania, USA
  • Environmental issues
  • Shale gas facility of Sasol
  • Shale gas facility of PPG Industries
PLANS OF COAL INDIA FOR COAL BED METHANE

Coal India is planning to invite CBM (coal-bed-methane) players to capture methane in the five existing underground mines in the Jharia and Bokaro coalfields in Jharkhand.

The project will ensure mine safety while expanding operations and use the captured gas for captive generation or other productive purposes.

The project proposed is similar to CBM operations but more expensive and relatively complex.

This article discusses the above subject in detailed manner.

CBM EXTRACTION VENTURE IN JHARKHAND

Electrosteel Castings Ltd (ECL) has entered into a joint venture agreement with Brisbane-registered Dart Energy Ltd for exploration, development, production and sale of coal bed methane (CBM) from ECL's captive coal mine at Parbatpur in the Jharia Basin of Jharkhand.

Geological studies on the Parbatpur mine have identified 18 coal seams in the Barakar Formation, named after Barakar River, with a cumulative thickness of over 80 metres at depths between 200 and 1,100 metres. The Parbatpur coal seams have high gas content and gas saturation close to 100 per cent, requiring extraction of the CBM ahead of mining for regulatory and mine safety purposes.

This article discusses the above subject in detailed manner.

NEWS ROUND UP

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed:

INTERNATIONAL

Controversy over Birla Carbon's Columbian Chem buy

  • PVDF
  • Sodium methylate plant in Argentina
  • Acrylic acid and acrylate derivatives plant in Brazil
  • Ethane from natural gas
  • Planned North American ethylene expansions
  • Project for Cellulosic ethanol

INDIA

AkzoNobel opens industrial coatings plant

  • Specialty composite resins
  • Gas output from D6 block short of target
  • ONGC notifies oil, gas discoveries in western India
  • RIL gas output may fall further

AGRO CHEMICAL PAGE

The recent developments on the following products/events are highlighted:

  • Maize production trend in India
  • Refining process for Aloe vera
  • Sorghum licensing
  • Monsanto algae Deal
  • Seaweed as weight loss product

TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENTS

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed:

  • Biobased fragrance ingredients
  • Biobased BDO
  • GIV3616 – A food additive
  • Storage of hydrogen
  • New fuel combination for more safe reactor
  • Dow develops foams retardant
  • Nano film to increase fruit and vegetable shelf life

CHINA NEWS

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed:

  • New Regulations For Polysilicon Industry In China
  • Nylon Plant
  • Evonik to expand PEEK capacity
  • Nitrobenzene
  • Sinopec-Kuwait Petroleum Refinery and Petchems JV
  • DSM Plans Composite Resin JV Facilities
  • PET joint venture
  • New Glass Fiber Manufacturing Facility in Hangzhou
  • Isocyanates
  • IPDI plant

ENERGY PAGE

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed:

  • Indian solar power projects face hurdles
  • Indian wind energy scenario
  • Power from canals in Uttarakhand
  • Siemens' new turbine for low-wind areas
  • National fund to finance solar power technology
  • Waste to power plant in China

PHARMA PAGE

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed:

  • Genetically modified fungus can fight malaria
  • EU ban on Ayurveda to hit Kerala hard
  • Codes for 100 million drug packs
  • Stem cell Regulations
  • No anti-dumping duty on penicillin-G 6-APA

ENVIRONMENTAL PAGE

The recent developments on the following products is discussed:

  • Brominated flame retardants

PRICE DETAILS

Global price trends on the following products are provided :

  • U.S. Butadiene price
  • Import price of phosphatic & potash fertilisers in India
  • Costlier raw materials forced hike in fertiliser prices
  • Rare earth prices
OTHER ARTICLES
  • Increasing import of acetone in India
  • Cassava root as biofuel
  • Blast at Sivakasi fireworks unit in Tamil Nadu, India
  • Indian coal shortage may trip 42000 mw of new projects
  • ONGC reworks coal bed methane development strategies
  • Tender
  • Chemicals imported at Chennai port during the month of February 2011
Subscribe to Nandini Chemical Journal and Order Reprints

Nandini Chemical Journal, Annual subscription, 12 issues, sent as a pdf document by email. US $100.