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

  • info@nandinichemical.com

Journals

Extracts from Nandini Chemical Journal, Nov 2012

Natural Wax|Salicylic Acid|Power problems|EPDM Projects
Highlights of Some of the Articles

TALK OF THE MONTH : UNDER UTILISATION OF CAPACITY IN POWER PROJECTS PRECARIOUS COAL SUPPLY - ARE WE PLANNING IN VACUUM?
NATURAL WAX - EMERGING OPPORTUNITIES
INDIAN CARBON BLACK INDUSTRY - IS THERE SPACE FOR NEW ENTRANT?
SALICYLIC ACID / ASPIRIN - INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITY
POWER PROBLEMS FACED BY CHEMICAL INDUSTRIES IN TAMIL NADU
WILL TAMIL NADU BECOME SELF SUFFICIENT IN POWER BY END 2013 ?
GOVERNMENT’S POLICY ON FRESH COAL LINKAGE
DROP IN CRUDE OIL PRODUCTION
NATURAL GAS PRODUCTION DECLINES 15%
FALL IN PRODUCTION IN KG D6 GAS BLOCK : WHAT IS THE WAY OUT?
ONGC WELL IN K-G BLOCK LEAKING GAS; ECO DAMAGE FEARED
EMERGENCY OIL STOCKPILE STORAGES FACE DELAY
EPDM PROJECTS OF LANXESS
SPOTLIGHT ON HELIUM
BIO GAS PLANT WAY TO TURN WASTE INTO RESOURCE
UOP’S METHANOL TO OLEFIN TECHNOLOGY
GUAR GUM CAN THE EXPORT EUPHORIA BE SUSTAINED?
OTHER FEATURES
OTHER ARTICLES

TALK OF THE MONTH

UNDER UTILISATION OF CAPACITY IN POWER PROJECTS  PRECARIOUS COAL SUPPLY - ARE WE PLANNING IN VACUUM?

Scarce coal supply is affecting 65,000 MW of power generation capacity in the country, according to report from Central Electricity Authority (CEA), the apex power planning body of the country.

While most states in the country are facing serious power shortage, the power problem is not so much due to lack of adequate power generating capacity in the country but only due to under utilisation of capacity, consequent to the lack of adequate coal supply to power projects. 

Obviously , the scenario is like putting the cart before the horse.

Power capacity affected

Close to 65,000 Mega Watts (MW) of generation capacity is lying idle in the country due to coal shortage, which is not supplied adequately by state run Coal India, according to CEA.

Power generation capacity of 47 power plants in the country have been severely affected, as these plants are facing acute shortage of coal. These 47 plants are categorised as stations with critical coal stock position of less than seven days by CEA.

Under utilisation of capacity

India’s thermal power plants have total installed capacity 1,18,703 MW, against which they are producing only 53,703 MW, as shortage of coal has affected these plants across the country.

Power plants with total installed capacity of 15,860 MW capacity of state owned NTPC are struggling due to less receipt of coal from Coal India, according to the CEA data.  Six of NTPC’s power stations-Rihand  2,500 MW, Singrauli 2,000 MW, Vindhyachal 3,760 MW, Ramagundam 2,600 MW, Simhadri 2,000 MW and Talcher 3,000 MW-are reeling under acute coal shortage.

Planning in Vacuum

Earlier, the Prime Minister’s Office directed Coal India Ltd to sign fuel supply agreements (FSAs) with power companies, even in the absence of power purchase agreements (PPAs)!.

It was decided that FSAs can be signed with power companies having long-term and medium-term PPAs based on confirmation from the Power Ministry that it is benefiting the consumers.

Coal output from Coal India India Ltd (CIL)

For all the problems that plague thermal power plants across India, Coal India Limited is mostly held responsible. This public sector undertaking, which holds a near monopoly on coal in India, has seen its output stagnate in the last three years.

While CIL is plagued by internal inefficiencies, the stagnation of CIL's production at 431 million tonnes (MT) a year is largely the outcome of events beyond its control.

There were two ways in which CIL could have boosted the coal production; by commissioning  new mines or extracting more from existing ones.

However, CIL didn't have too many new, explored blocks where mining could start. It only has expansion and extension projects left.

Faulty government policy

The present problems faced by Coal India are due to the decision by the Government of India in 2004, to give blocks that CIL had asked for to other companies for captive use.

In order to maintain production at 731 million metric tonnes- the overall coal demand in 2011-12 -CIL calculated that it would need 289 blocks, according to the report on coal by the government auditor.

But after the government did not assign 139 blocks to CIL, the company was left with 150 blocks. CIL had to suffer production drop and it told the coal ministry in 2007 that it could not ensure linkages (commit supply to a project). But the ministry overruled Coal India and kept signing linkages with power project.

Issues facing Coal India

Left with fewer new blocks, CIL had to expand production from existing blocks. CIL's blocks in North Karanpara, Mand-Raigarh and Ib Valley can produce  cumulative 250 million metric tonne of coal annually.
But each of these project face expansion-related issues. CIL has readied about 70 projects, which are waiting for various clearances Delay in  environment and pollution clearances and land acquisition have been problems in increasing the production.

In North Karanpara. CIL can produce 50 million metric tonne a year. All approvals are in place, but the 93 km rail line is not available. It is the same story at Ib Valley and Mand-Raigarh. CIL has told the Railways that it would be willing to fund the Rs 7,500 crore needed for the rail. Even then, the Railways are not going ahead. Similarly, expansion work at Kusmunda, Gevra and Dipka - its fields in Korba – are stuck due to issues with land acquisition.

Besides land acquisition and rail connectivity, a third reason why CIL could not ramp up production from existing blocks came from the environment ministry. It barred industrial expansion in critically polluted areas like Korba.

Going forward, CIL has reduced its assured supply to thermal plants from 100% to 65%. It will still struggle to meet demand.

Estimation of production from Coal India

The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report, quoting a CIL study done in 2006, said that the company's production would peak at 664 million metric tonne in 2016-17 and thereafter decline to 619 million metric tonne in        2026-27.

The decline would accelerate after 2026-27, due to exhaustion of existing mines and completed project resources.This would be an alarming situation.

NATURAL WAX - EMERGING OPPORTUNITIES

Source of natural wax

In warm climates, plants secrete waxes to control evaporation and hydration. Such natural waxes are extracted from the plants.

Type of natural wax

 Vegetable wax types

 Source

Candelilla wax

Candelilla shrub

Carnauba wax

Brazilian palm

Cotton wax

Surface of cotton fibre

Esparto wax

esparto grass

Japan wax

Fruit berries of the rhus tree

Jojoba wax

Jojoba oil

Ouricury wax

Ouricury palm tree

Palm wax

Palm berries

Rice bran wax

Rice bran oil

Soy wax

Soy bean oil

Sugarcane wax

Byproduct from sugarcane

Tea wax

Tea leaves

The following details are discussed in this article.

  •         Comparison of  waxes from vegetable source and paraffin wax
  •         Comparison of melting point
  •         Technology development  efforts for  natural wax
  •         Wax market outlook
  •         Global wax market pattern for vegetable based wax and others
  •         Switch over of  global candle wax market to vegetable wax
  •         Global usage pattern wax
  •         Wax producers
  •         Prognosis
INDIAN CARBON BLACK INDUSTRY - IS THERE SPACE FOR NEW ENTRANT?

Carbon block industry has been registering steady growth in demand in India. While adequate capacity has been built up to meet the present requirement, carbon black is imported in substantial quantity. The export of carbon black also takes place.

Indian carbon black scenario is discussed in this article.

Product characteristics

Appearance Powder or pellets
CAS No. 1333-86-4
Colour Black
Odour Odour less
Stability                          Relatively stable
Pellets 200 – 680 kg / m3
Powder (fluffy)               20 – 380 kg / m3

Application

Carbon black is largely used as reinforcement in automobile tyre and non tyre application (primarily mechanical rubber goods)

The performance of carbon black in various applications is determined by a wide range of characteristics.   Among the most important parameters that determine the performance of carbon black are surface area and structure.   In general, a high surface area results in high reinforcement, particularly good tensile and tear strength and good abrasion resistance.

The following details are discussed in this article.

  •         Indian producers
  •         Plant closure
  •         New projects under planning  / implementation
  •         Import / export data for carbon black
  •         Demand drivers
  •         Number of vehicles produced
  •         Tyre sector
  •         Production of tyres
  •         Demand growth for carbon black
  •         Industry capacity utilisation
  •         Future production estimate
  •         Future demand supply and gap
  •         Prognosis
SALICYLIC ACID / ASPIRIN - INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITY

SALICYLIC ACID

Appearance White crystals, usually in fine needles, of fluffy  white 
crystalline powder    
Chemical formula C6H7O3
Stability Salicylic acid is stable in air and may discolour gradually in sunlight

Action of heat: When rapidly heated at atmospheric pressure, it decomposes into phenol and carbon dioxide.

Solubility:  Slightly soluble in water and in benzene; freely soluble in alcohol and ether; soluble in boiling water; sparingly soluble in chloroform.

Toxicity                           LD50 500 mg/kg

Product Specification

Assay                              Salicylic acid contains not less than 99.5%         
and not more than 101% of C7H6O3,calculated on the dry basis.

Melting Point                            158 to 161  deg.C
Loss on drying                Loses not more than 0.5% of its weight when  
dried over silica gel for three hours

Residue on ignition                   Not more than 0.05%
Chloride                          Not more than 140 ppm
Sulphate                         Not more than 200 ppm
Heavy metals                  Not more than 20 ppm

Product application

Salicylic acid is reacted with acetic anhydride to produce acetyl salicylic acid (aspirin)

Salicylic acid is used in the pharmaceutical sector as an antiseptic, disinfectant and anti-fungal agent. It is applied externally as a dusting powder, lotion or ointment for the treatment of dandruff, eczema, psoriasis and parasitic skin diseases.  To destroy warts or crone, it is applied in a collodion or as a plaster.
ASPIRIN

Appearance        :               White, crystalline 
powder; almost odourless.

Chemical Formula C9H8O4

Other names         :        2 - Acetoxybenzoic acid, Acetyl salicylic acid, Salicylic acid acetate.

Solubility    :               Freely soluble in ethanol (95%); soluble in chloroform and in  ether; slightly soluble in water.

Specification

Assay (On dry basis)        Not less than  99.50 % &  not more           than  100.50 %

Chloride                          Not more than 430 ppm

Sulphate                         Not more than 600 ppm

Arsenic                            Sample stain shall not be more intense than standard stain. (2 ppm)

Heavy metals                   Not more than 10 ppm

Salicylic Acid                    Not more than 0.10%
Sulphated Ash                  Not more than 0.10%
Loss on drying                  Not more than 0.50%

Application

Aspirin has an analgesic, anti-inflammatory and antipyrine actions. It is used for the relief of less severe types of pain e.g. head ache, neutris acute and chronic rheumatoid arthritis, myalgias and tooth ache.

Aspirin is now accepted as an important drug in the prevention of heart disease.

The following details are discussed in this article

*        Import / export of Salicylic acid
*        Import / export of Aspirin
*        Indian producers of salicylic acid / aspirin
*        Demand trend
*        Manufacturing process
*        Salicylic scenario in China
*        Global scenario for aspirin
*        Technology / application development efforts for aspirin
*        Prognosis

POWER PROBLEMS FACED BY CHEMICAL INDUSTRIES IN TAMIL NADU

Chemical Industries Association, an apex body, representing cross section of chemical industries organized  an interactive meeting  on 20th October,2012 at Chennai. to discuss about the power problems faced by the chemical industries in Tamil Nadu.

The meeting was attended by senior executives from  several chemical  industries in the state.

After extensive and in depth discussion for over three hours, the meeting adopted the following resolutions.

Severe impact on small and medium chemical industries :

For chemical industry ,continuous supply of power is important to maintain the quality and cost standards.  Often, long duration of power cuts are imposed without any prior  notice , putting the industries into a tail spin

While large chemical and  allied industries have reduced their dependence on Tamil Nadu Generation And Distribution Corporation Ltd. (TANGEDCO) to a large extent by setting up their own power units to meet the captive requirement to a large extent,  small and medium scale units are not in a position to do so.  Due to the present severe power cut of  even 8 to 10 hours every day all over Tamil Nadu, many small and  tiny units have been forced to close down the operations and the remaining operating units are incurring heavy losses. There have been loss of many job opportunities in recent months. Medium and small chemical industries in Tamil Nadu now feel crippled due to the severe power cuts and load sheddings.

This article discusses the following matters.

*        Delay in power projects implementation 
*        Power purchase from Independent Power Producers (IPP)
*        Need to encourage independent power producers 
*        Under utilization of wind power capacity 
*        Need to encourage power projects for cluster 
*        Need to focus on off shore wind energy projects 
*        Need for single window clearance for power projects

WILL TAMIL NADU BECOME SELF SUFFICIENT IN POWER BY END 2013?

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister has said that Tamil Nadu will become self sufficient in power by end 2013. Of course ,this statement will make everyone  happy  in the state.  However, one would not  be sure that this would indeed happen, if he would carefully consider the  present gap in power supply, increasing demand for power and the capacity of the power projects presently under implementation and due for commissioning in 2012/2013.

The following data need to be studied carefully to understand the factual position.

Installed power capacity from conventional source (Hydro, thermal, gas, captive power plants) in Tamil Nadu

Period (April to March)

Installed capacity (conventional source)

in Mega Watt

2004-05

9531

2005-06

10031

2006-07

10098

2007-08

10122

2008-09

10214

2009-10

10214

2010-11

10237

2011-12

10364.5

The above figures indicate that there has been  no significant capacity addition in conventional power in the past  seven  years

Installed power capacity from non-conventional source (Renewable source)  (Period: April, 2011 to March, 2012)

Wind mill:                    6987.60 MW

Co generation:              559.50 MW

Biomass:                     137.05  MW

Total                          7684.15  MW

The above figures indicate that there have been significant capacity creation for wind power in Tamil Nadu during the last few years.   However,  the capacity utilisation of wind power stations has been only around  30% on annualised basis, due to lack of wind speed during many months of the year.
Total installed power capacity  (including conventional and renewable)  

Total installed power capacity in Tamil Nadu Period: (April, 2011 to March, 2012) -  18048.65  MW

Present availability of power on annualised basis (including conventional and renewable)

Present availability of power   -  8000 to 9000 MW

The  availability of power  is much lower than the installed power generating capacity  due to transmission losses, production loss due to preventive and break down maintenance ,  low capacity  utilisation of wind power stations  and unforeseen reasons.

Present demand for power  and gap in supply

The present  demand   for power is around 12,000 MW and supply gap is around 3000 to 4000 MW

Futuristic power needs in 2013 and beyond

If GDP growth of 8% per annum were to be maintained, Tamil Nadu has to increase power generation at 10% per annum (considering 20% transmission losses etc) .

This means that Tamil Nadu has to increase the power capacity by 1500 MW per year, after creating capacity to meet the present shortage of 3000 MW to 4000 MW of power

Proposed power capacity additions  in Tamil Nadu                               (Period: 2012  &  2013)

Name

Source

Capacity MW

Programme for commissioning

NCTPS-Stage-II Unit-1(North Chennai)

Thermal

600

March 2013

NCTPS-Stage-II Unit-2(North Chennai)

Thermal

600

August 2013

MTPS Stage-III (Mettur)

Thermal

600

October, 2012

Bavani, Periar etc
(small and mini hydro projects)

Hydro

59

2011- 2012

NTPC TNEB Energy Co. Ltd JV,(Vallore)

Thermal

1500

2013

NLC Tamil Nadu Power Ltd JV(Tuticorin)

Thermal

1100

2013

Koodangulam Nuclear Power plant

Nuclear

1000

Early 2013

Co generation projects)

From cooperative sugar factories

180

2012-2013

Total

 

5639

 

 Likely installed capacity by end 2013

 Conventional:                            16003.5    MW  (10364.5 + 5639  MW )

Non-conventional:                       7700        MW

Total                                          23703.5    MW           

In Tamil Nadu, against 644 MW of capacity of wind power added in the first quarter of 2011-2012,   just about 163 MW was added in the corresponding period this year. Capacity additions for wind power are happening in Gujarat,  Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Karnataka in larger scale.

Project delays

While the above availability of power by end 2013 have been assessed  based on  the announced schedules, the fact is that power  projects in Tamil Nadu in the last one decade have never been completed on time.

The following data on project delays would illustrate this fact.

Unit No. & Capacity in MW

Scheduled date of commissioning

Present committed date

Delay in months

VALLUR THERMAL POWER PROJECT

Unit 1/500

November-2010

October - 2012

          24

Unit 2/500

April-2011

End  2012

          19

Unit 3/500

September-2011

July-2013

          22

NORTH CHENNAI THERMAL POWER PROJECT

Unit 1/600

May-2011

March-2013

          20

Unit 2/600

September-2011

August 2013

          24

TUTICORIN THERMAL POWER PROJECT

Unit 1/500

April-2012

July-2013

         15

Unit 2/600

September-2012

September-2013

        12

Other projects under preliminary stage

Name

Capacity MW

Announced probable date of commissioning

Ennore SEZ Thermal Power Project

2x800

2016

NCTPS Stage III Thermal Power Project

1x800

2016

Thiruvadanai Thermal Power Project

2x800

2016

Utharakosamangai Thermal Power Project

2x800

2016

Nagapattinam Ultra Mega Thermal Power Project

5X800

2017

Cheyyur Ultra Mega Thermal Power Project

5X800

2017

Udangudi Power Corporation

2x800

2016

The above projects are still under preliminary stage and in several cases, environmental clearance are yet to be obtained and financial closures are yet to be made..

No power project in Tamil Nadu have been completed in the past within three years from the date of  commencement of project implementation after obtaining all clearances.  Therefore, it is extremely doubtful as to whether above  indicated probable date would be achieved.

 Solar Power

Tamil Nadu government has announced that 3000 MW of solar power capacity would be built in next three years. 

However, it has to be noted that  though Government of India has set a target of 22000 MW of solar power by 2022 , at present, India has grid interactive solar PV installed capacity of around 1030 MW only.  In addition, India has around 85.21 MW of off grid solar PV systems, counting only those that are higher than 1 kW. Most of the capacities have come in Gujarat.

In any case, it is unlikely that any significant solar power capacity would be built in Tamil Nadu before end 2013.

Likely  demand supply  power scenario  by end 2013 :

Based on the above data and facts and the ground reality, it is unlikely that Tamil Nadu would become self sufficient in power by  end 2013 ,even by optimistic estimate of considering, that the projects which have been announced for completion by end 2013 would be on schedule and the projects would operate at 80% capacity utilization in the case of thermal power projects and 30% in the case of wind power projects.

The demand for power is considered  to go up  by 8% per annum.
  

Demand for power in 2013 considering 8% increase in demand per annum

Installed conventional power in end 2013

Available power after considering 80% capacity utilization & 20 % transmission loss

Installed non conventional power  in end 2013

Available power at 30% capacity utilisation

Supply gap by end 2013

 

12960 MW

 

16003 MW

 

9,600 MW

 

7700 MW

 

2310 MW

 

1050 MW

80% capacity utilization is considered based on the likely loss of production due to break down and preventive maintenance schedules and any unforeseen reasons, which is considered  based on the past trend of performance records

The above data indicate that there is likely to be power shortage in  Tamil Nadu by end 2013 even  under most optimistic conditions. 

The situation is  likely to become worse in 2014  & 2015 as new projects are unlikely to be adequate to meet the growing demand.

Solar power project scheme announced by Tamil Nadu can help and second phase of Koodankulam nuclear plant can also help to some extent and it remains to be seen as to what extent they can help to bridge the supply gap in 2014 and 2015.  

It has to be kept in mind that  in the case of capacity creation by central government projects in Tamil Nadu, the state would get only share of the power generated.

Prognosis

It is extremely important that  Tamil  Nadu  government should manage its power projects and also ensure that private power projects would be managed very efficiently to reduce the power shortage , though it will not be able to totally eliminate power shortage by end  2013.

 One has to keep the fingers crossed.

Tamil Nadu government should also be highly concerned about the likely power scenario in 2014 and beyond , when the situation would again become grave if the projects now in the preliminary stage , would not be taken forward with the speed and urgency that are needed.

GOVERNMENT’S POLICY ON FRESH COAL LINKAGE

The shortage of domestic coal is finally beginning to affect development of new power projects in the country with the government proposing to stop acceptance of companies’ applications for fresh coal linkages for a period of three years.

It may also restrict provision of long-term coal linkage to only 60,000 mw of power projects in the 12th Five-Year Plan against the power ministry’s recommendation for 1,50,000 mw of projects.

The move, which aims to prevent Coal India Ltd (CIL) from defaulting on its coal commitment to projects is expected to put brakes on fresh investments in the power sector, as assurance on fuel is critical for getting finances for putting up power plants. It would also make the task of adding 1,00,000 mw of new capacity in the current Plan impossible.

The above scenario  is discussed.

DROP IN CRUDE OIL PRODUCTION

India’s crude oil production dropped 1.7 per cent to 3.06 million metric tonnes in September with state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) reporting a 7.8 per cent decline in Mumbai High output at 1.24 million metric tonnes.

Mumbai High output was lower because of less than anticipated oil gain from development wells” as well as less than anticipated oil gain from Vasai East field.

NATURAL GAS PRODUCTION DECLINES 15%

The country’s natural gas production dropped nearly 15 per cent in September 2012 as Reliance Industries eastern offshore KG-D6 field continue to decline.

Gas production at 3.36 billion cubic meters (bcm) in September was 14.8 per cent lower than 3.95 bcm a year ago, according to latest data released by the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas.

Fields operated by private firms like Reliance Industries  saw a massive 34.3 per cent drop in output to 1.15 bcm.

Total six wells in Dhirubhai-1 & 3 gas field (in KG-D6 block) and two in MA oil and gas field (in the same area) have ceased to flow due to water/sand ingress.

FALL IN PRODUCTION IN KG D6 GAS BLOCK WHAT IS THE WAY OUT?

The steep fall in the performance and drop in production of natural gas from the KG D6 gas block off the Andhra coast, which has resulted in the loss of opportunities to the country, is a matter of grave concern. 

Several chemical and power projects in Andhra Pradesh that were implemented based on the estimated gas output from the basin are now idling, causing loss of several thousand crores of rupees of investment.  Substantial money are now being invested in laying gas pipelines based on KG D6 gas block output to several locations including Tamil Nadu.  Many plans have gone awry.

The above subject is discussed.

ONGC WELL IN K-G BLOCK LEAKING GAS; ECO DAMAGE FEARED

ONGC is developing G-1 field along with neighbouring GS-15. Both the fields are marginal or small finds. G-1-9 well was part of this development, through which ONGC had planned to produce 2.7 million standard cubic meters of gas and 9,400 barrels of associated oil daily. ONGC had in the integrated development of G-1 and GS-15, targeted to produce 0.982 million tonnes of oil and 5.92 billion cubic meters of gas by 2020-21.

This article discusses the above subject.

EMERGENCY OIL STOCKPILE STORAGES FACE DELAY

India's emergency oil stockpile storage is facing a year's delay because of geological surprises encountered in construction of underground caverns.

Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserves Ltd, a subsidiary of Oil India Development Board (OIDB), is a special purpose vehicle that is building the strategic stockpile.

The first of the 5.33 million tonne of storages at Vishkhapatnam, Mangalore and Padur were to be built by 2013.

This article discusses the above subject.

THORIUM ISSUES

Indian coastal region contains economically important minerals like monazite, garnet, ilmenite, leucoxene, rutile, sillimanite and zircon, commonly referred to as beach sand minerals.

Among these, monazite is a "prescribed substance" under the various Indian atomic laws. DAE's Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research has surveyed the coastal regions extensively to assess its distribution along with other beach sand minerals.

Monazite is a beach sand mineral which contains thorium, one of the components used in nuclear plants.

Thorium is a strategic mineral and is  a greener alternative to uranium. 
Thorium which can breed uranium 233 is the future energy source for India.

India has to  protect it’s thorium reserves.

Monazite, often found in placer deposits, is a reddish brown phosphate mineral containing rare earth metals usually in small isolated crystals. There are actually at least four different kinds of monazite, depending on elemental composition of the mineral

Monazite-Ce (Ce, La, Pr, Nd,Th,Y)PO4
Monazite-La (La, Ce, Nd, Pr) PO4)
Monazite-Nd (Nd, La, Ce, Pr)PO4
Monazite-Sm (Sm, Gd, Ce, Th) PO4
Monazite is an important ore for thorium, lanthanum and cerium

Monazite can be isolated as nearly pure concentrate by the use of gravity, magnetic and electrostatic separation.

Monazite reserves of India are estimated to be around 18 million tonnes

This article also discusses the following subject.

  • Government policy
  • Statement from DAE
EPDM PROJECTS OF LANXESS

LANXESS is the world's leading supplier of EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer) following the successful acquisition and integration of DSM Elastomers in 2011. It markets its products under the brand name Keltan.

LANXESS operates EPDM production sites in Geleen, the Netherlands, Marl, Germany, Orange, USA and Triunfo, Brazil, with a combined capacity of 320,000 metric tonnes per annum.

LANXESS plans to convert 50 percent of its total production capacity at the Geleen site to Keltan ACE technology in 2013.

SPOTLIGHT ON HELIUM

Helium is a co product of natural gas production.

The U.S. government, specifically the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), is in control of 70% of the world’s helium supply as of 2010.

The global supply of helium is flat and demand is rising—which are causing the constraints. The [supply] imbalance is caused by a combination of several factors—the biggest being that plants are not producing at full capacity. The economic downturn has also cut supply by reducing production of natural gas. U.S. supply is fairly stable, but declines in production in  other regions are the major cause of constraints.

The following details are discussed in this article.

*        Price trend
*        Prognosis
*        Indian Import

BIO GAS PLANT WAY TO TURN WASTE INTO RESOURCE

The Nisargruna biogas plant is based on technology developed by the Mumbai-based Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC).

Nisargruna biogas plants can produce 25-30 kg of methane and 50-60 kg of organic manure from one tonne of biodegradable waste.

The best part of the technology is its ability to generate resource even from hazardous biological sludge. Waste from textile, food and chemical plants contain harmful chemicals. When the waste is treated, the biological sludge too turns hazardous as organisms absorb harmful chemicals.

BARC has transferred the technology to around 100 private entrepreneurs.“Such plants have already been installed at 146 locations,”

Nisargruna biogas plant at Auro Textiles belonging to Vardhman Group came up in 2010 in Baddi in Himachal Pradesh.

Technology

Conventional gobar gas plants have a single digester and produce biogas containing 55-65 per cent of methane and 45-35 per cent of carbon dioxide.

But the Nisargruna plants are biphasic (aerobic followed by anaerobic phase) and produce biogas containing  70-80 per cent of methane and only 30-20 per cent of carbon dioxide.

Following details are discussed in this article 
*           Process outline
*           New projects in the pipeline
*           Cost of the plant

UOP’S METHANOL TO OLEFIN TECHNOLOGY

Honeywell’s UOP/Hydro MTO process converts methanol from gasified coal or natural gas to produce high yields of ethylene and propylene, building block materials used in the production of films, packaging, plastics and other petrochemicals.

The MTO process, jointly developed by Honeywell’s UOP and INEOS, converts methanol from crude oil and non-crude oil sources such as coal or natural gas to ethylene and propylene. The process, based on proprietary UOP catalysts, is proven to provide high yields with minimal byproducts. MTO also offers flexibility in the quantity of propylene and ethylene produced, so producers can adjust plant designs to most effectively address market demands.

The above subject is discussed in this article.

GUAR GUM - CAN THE EXPORT EUPHORIA BE SUSTAINED?

Guar gum, farm commodities, has quietly emerged as the biggest foreign exchange earner among farm items barring cotton, which is a major cash crop.

Guar gum exports had a more than 14-fold jump in the two years through March 2012 to Rs.16,523.83 crore and also recorded a nearly sixfold rise over 2010-11, official data showed.

Guar gum has come a long way from being just a thickening agent or a cattle feed.

Use of guar gum in shale gas exploration

Demand for guar gum — extracted from guar seed, used as sealant in oil and natural gas drilling — has shot up in the past.  In recent time, soaring crude oil prices have made it profitable for US prospecting firms to drill for shale gas, which had been considered unremunerative earlier. Shale gas producers use guar gum for hydraulic fracturing or fracking.

This article discusses the following matter

*        India’s guar gum output
*        Global demand
*        Top guar importers in the world
*        Can the export boom be sustained?

GENETICALLY MODIFIED MOSQUITOES ENVIRONMENTAL CONCERNS

Living Modified Organisms (LMOs), are products of modern biotechnology.

Genetically modified mosquitoes let loose in some parts of the world to combat dengue fever (common in India) have raised both concern and excitement.

The above subject is discussed in this article.

OTHER FEATURES

SAFETY AND ACCIDENT PAGE

Following safety and accident details are discussed

*        Mishap in sinter plant disrupts  production in Visakhapatnam Steel Plant

*        Nitrogen leakage

ANTI DUMPING PAGE

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

*        Stainless steel import from EU,US,S.Korea
*        Non radial bias tyres 
*        Melamine 
*        Paracetamol 
*        Pyridine

NEWS ROUND UP – INTERNATIONAL

OLEOCHEMICALS JV IN MALAYSIA

Oleon (Ertvelde, Belgium) and palm plantation owner United Plantations (UP; Perak, Malaysia) have announced the formation of an equally owned joint venture, UniOleon, which will build an oleochemical food emulsifier plant for an estimated €26 million ($32.6 million).

The products are used in the bakery, dairy, and confection industries, which are fast-growing markets in Asia.

The facility will be constructed at Pulau Indah, Malaysia, next to Oleon’s existing plant.

The project will be built in two phases, starting in early 2014 with the production of monoglycerides, which will both be sold on the merchant market and used as a starting material to produce the emulsifiers in the second phase of the project. This latter phase is due onstream by the end of 2015.

Following details are explained

*        Oleon
*        United Plantations

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed

*        Precipitated silica
*        Epoxy resin
*        Carbon dioxide 
*        Fertilizer Complex in Iowa,USA
*        Butyl rubber
*        Refuge-in-a-Bag product
*        Biobased Emollients

NEWS ROUND UP – INDIA

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed

*        Soda ash
*        Malaysian palm oil exports to India

TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENTS

The recent developments on the following technology is discussed

  • Efforts for conversion of iron into platinum

CHINA NEWS

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

  •         Syngas based MEG project
  •         Vacuum salt production unit
  •         Integrated oxy-fuel solution to reduce emissions
  •         PTA plant
  •         Activated phosphorus chemical project
  •         Titanium dioxide project
  •         CPVC project

PHARMA PAGE

The recent developments on the following drugs are updated

  • LMTX – New drug to treat Alzheimer
  • Pegasys -  Drug for Hepatitis C

ENERGY PAGE

The recent developments in nuclear and off shore wind farm are discussed.

  • British nuclear project deal
  • World’s  largest offshore wind farm
OTHER ARTICLES
  • Global Price Trend For Urea
  • Tender
  • Chemicals Imported At The Chennai Port during the Month Of August 2012
Subscribe to Nandini Chemical Journal and Order Reprints

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