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                       HIGHLIGHTS OF ARTICLES FROM  SEPTEMBER 2017 ISSUE OF

                                                   NANDINI CHEMICAL JOURNAL

  • TALK OF THE MONTH

  • INDIAN SCIENTISTS TAKE OUT PROTEST MARCH – SHOULD THEY COMPLAIN OR INTROSPECT?

  • TETRAHYDROFURAN / POLYTETRAHYDROFURAN – PRODUCT PROFILE

  • SPOTLIGHT ON SPECIALITY CHEMICAL

  • CYCLODEXTRIN

  • NUTMEG – AN IMPORTANT ADDITIVE IN FOOD PRODUCTS

  • BIO ADIPIC ACID – TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT EFFORTS

  • WHY NOT ALLOT UNUTILISED LAND IN SICK UNITS FOR INDUSTRIAL PROJECTS ?

  • ROSNEFT ACQUIRES ESSAR OIL– SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME IN INDIAN INDUSTRY

  • REVIVAL POSSIBILITY OF NAGARJUNA OIL CORPORATION

  • SOLAR WASTE MANAGEMENT – A GRIM PROBLEM

  • RECENT TREND IN GLOBAL BIOCIDES INDUSTRY

  • ANTI DUMPING PAGE

  • NEWS ROUND UP – INTERNATIONAL

  • TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT

  • CHINA NEWS

  • NEWS ROUND UP – INDIA

  • AGRO CHEMICAL PAGE

  • ENERGY PAGE

  • ENVIRONMENTAL PAGE

  • OTHER ARTICLES

  • TENDER

TALK OF THE MONTH
INDIAN SCIENTISTS TAKE OUT PROTEST MARCH –SHOULD THEY COMPLAIN OR INTROSPECT?

Recently, some scientists across India participated in a ‘March for Science’  demanding greater budget for research and curbs on “pseudo science.”.

The scientists demanded that the Government of India allot at least 3% of the GDP for scientific and technological research. They also wanted the government to allocate 10% of the GDP for science education.

The protest march by scientists give an impression that they are aggrieved party and have several grievances. However, discerning observers tend to think that the scientists in India have more reasons to introspect about their performance and contribution to Indian  scientific and technological growth, rather than finding fault elsewhere for their lacklustre  performance.

The fact is that most of the government owned research and development organisations in India survive  almost entirely based on the government’s liberal fund support and they are not able to turn out  many outstanding research output that would enable the organisations to supply their technology and earn income for their organisations to become self reliant.

Fund support from government :

CSIR (Council of Scientific and Industrial Research) promoted and funded by Government of India has completed 75 years of service to the nation.

Having pan India presence, CSIR has a network of 38 national laboratories, 39 outreach centres and  3 Innovation Complexes. About 4600 active scientists supported by about 8000 scientific and technical personnel serve in CSIR.

During the last seven decades of existence, several thousands of crore of rupees of taxpayer’s money has been pumped into the CSIR institutions by Government of India for maintaining and sustaining the research and development activities.

Government of India allocated Rs 7,288 crore in 2015-16 for conducting research, giving a hike of   Rs 1,793 crore compared to the budget of 2014-15.

In spite of Government of India asking CSIR labs to become financially self supporting atleast for meeting the salaries and maintenance expenses, several CSIR labs have not been able to do so.

By and large, the objective that the research and development projects should be profit oriented is not being met by CSIR labs.

While it is appropriate that the government should provide liberal support to the scieintific bodies, such support must result in tangible and economically beneficial results. Today, all over the world, research activities are not any more considered as academic exercise but viewed as commercial activity.

Fund utilisation :

Of the funds allotted by the government, more than 75% are spent towards meeting the salaries and wages of the scientists and other employees and maintenance expenses of the laboratories.  CSIR labs are presently reported to be generating only around 10% of the budget through external sources.

The fact is that scientists in the CSIR labs are unable to earn income for their labs by their research efforts commensurate with the investments made by the government and recurring expenses of the government in maintaining the labs year after year for over 75 years now.

Poor track record for innovation :

India is still far behind its Asian counterparts in terms of innovation, according to data released by World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).

India saw a drop in international patent applications to 1,423 under the Patent Cooperation Treaty in 2015, while Japan (44,235), China (29,846) and Korea (14,626) figured in the top 10 list, registering a rise of 20%, 14% and 7%, respectively, from last year.

Have the protesting scientists forgotten the Dehradun Declaration?

Dehradun Declaration was adopted at the end of two day conference of CSIR Directors held at CSIR Indian Institute of Petroleum in Dehradun in the month of June 2015.

During the conference ,it was decided that CSIR labs would devise ways to develop industry driven technologies, including game changing technologies. Each laboratory would also develop at least one technology in strategic sector for India.

As part of Dehradun Declaration under Union Science Minister’s leadership, the Directors of CSIR labs committed that CSIR would generate about 50% of its budget through external sources.

This has not happened and no convincing explanation have been offered so far for the inability to achieve the target.

Obviously, management and scientists have to change their mindset  and improve their performance standards and produce value from R&D work in keeping with the CSIR mandate.

Scientists need to introspect and not complain :

It is evident that the confidence of the industries and end users in the government owned research institutions and university based research efforts have not been high.

It remains to be seen whether the management and scientists in CSIR labs will reorient themselves with changed outlook and more determination to turnout innovative research findings, that are appropriate to the needs of the country and that would meet the expectations of the industry and end users.

The scientists have more reasons to introspect than to complain.

Contribution of  industries in R&D field

Contribution of Indian industries (both private and public sector) to the research efforts in India are  also far from adequate.

 It is seen that  many medium and large scale units do not have  dedicated R&D department at all. Quiet a number of them have R&D department, which are more used for trouble shooting and quality betterment programme than for conducting original research.

Lack of corporate R&D strategy in India are conspicuous.

TETRAHYDROFURAN / POLYTETRAHYDROFURAN – PRODUCT PROFILE

Tetrahydrofuran

CAS No.                                  109-99-9

Molecular formula:                    C4H8O

Tetrahydrofuran (THF) is a clear, colourless, low viscosity liquid with an ether like odour.                     

THF exhibits high volatility and has  low freezing point. At 20 deg.C, THF is completely miscible with water.

Producer’s specification

Name of the producer             INVISTA

Description

Unit

Specification

Purity

wt %

99.95 min.

Colour

APHA

10 max.

Moisture content

wt ppm

300 max.

Peroxide content

(calculated THF-hydroperoxide)

wt ppm

150 max.

Stabilizer (BHT)

wt ppm

75-150

Storage and handling

General industry practice is to store THF in carbon steel vessels at ambient temperatures.

THF may form peroxides when exposed to oxygen or air. However, this reaction can be inhibited with stabilizers like BHT (butylated hydroxyl toluene).

THF is also hygroscopic and will pick up water, if exposed to moist air. It is recommended to store THF under a blanket of dry nitrogen.

Polytetrahydrofuran (Poly THF)

Polytetrahydrofuran (polyTHF) is a white solid that melts into a clear, colourless liquid when heated to between –15 and +30 deg C depending on its molecular weight.

Product characteristics

Formula                                    HO[(CH2)4O]n

CAS number                            25190-06-1

Density at 40 deg C                  0.975 – 0.98 g/cm3

Producer’s specification

Name of the producer BASF, Germany

Product

PolyTHF

250

PolyTHF

650

PolyTHF

1000

PolyTHF

1400

PolyTHF

1800

PolyTHF

2000

Molecular (g/mol)

225–275

625 – 675

975–1025

1350–1450

1750–1850

1950–2050

Hydroxyl number

(mg K0H/g)

408.0–498.7

166.2–179.5

109.5–115.1

77.4–83.1

60.6–64.1

54.7–57.5

Acid number (mg K0H/g)

Max. 0.05

Max. 0.05

Max. 0.05

Max. 0.05

Max. 0.05

Max. 0.05

Color (APHA)

Max. 40

Max. 40

Max. 40

Max. 40

Max. 40

Max. 40

Water (ppm)

Max. 150

Max. 150

Max. 150

Max. 150

Max. 150

Max. 150

BHT (ppm)

200 – 350

200 – 350

200 – 350

200 – 350

200 – 350

200 – 350

Following details are discussed in this article

  • Applications

  • Indian scenario

  • Indian production

  • Indian import  of tetrahydrofuran

  • Pattern of countrywise import for tetrahydrofuran

  • Indian import of  poly tetrahydrofuran

  • Process

  • Global scenario

  • Global  regionwise consumption trend for THF

  • Demand drivers

  • Global producers

  • Prognosis

SPOTLIGHT ON SPECIALITY CHEMICAL - CYCLODEXTRIN

Cyclodextrins are cyclic oligosaccharides obtained from starch by enzymatic cyclisation using enzymes.

The most common cyclodextrins are

  • ALPHA-cyclodextrin    (6 cyclo-(1,4)-anhydroglucose units)

  • BETA-cyclodextrin       (7 cyclo-(1,4)-anhydroglucose units)

  • GAMMA-cyclodextrin  (8 cyclo-(1,4)-anhydroglucose units)

Product characteristics

Description

Type of cyclodextrin

 

Alpha cyclodextrin

Beta cyclodextrin

Gamma cyclodextrin

CAS no.

10016-20-3

7585-39-9

17465-86-0

Alternate name

  • Cyclohexaamylose
  • Cyclomaltohexaose
  • Cycloheptamylose
  • Beta cycloamylose
  • Cyclo octaamylose

Appearance

Hexagonal plates

Or

Blade shaped needles

Parallelogram shaped crystals

Square plates or rectangular rods

Molecular formula

C36H60O30

C42H70O35

C48H80O40

Number of glucopyranose units

6

7

8

Melting point

278 deg C

298 to 300 deg C

267 deg C

Solubility in water at 25 deg C (g/100ml H2O)

14.50

1.85

23.20

Storage

Store at room temperature in sealed containers under dry and well ventilated conditions

Following details are discussed  in this article

  • Applications

  • Regulations

  • Annual import / export

  • Indian producers

  • Proposed new project

  • Indian demand for cyclodextrin and derivatives

  • GLOBAL SCENARIO

  • Global consumption / demand for cyclodextrin           

  • Global producers

  • .Growth rate in demand

  • Global use pattern

  • Process outline and main raw material requirement

  • SWOT analysis

NUTMEG – AN IMPORTANT ADDITIVE IN FOOD PRODUCTS

Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans),is  tropical tree (family Myristicaceae).

The tree yield fruit eight years after sowing, reach their prime in 25 years and bear fruit for  60 years or longer. Nutmeg crop grow well in humid and warm climatic conditions.This crop requires an annual rainfall of 150 cm above.

The spice nutmeg  is made of seed and has a distinctive pungent fragrance and a warm slightly sweet taste.

Nutmeg, is a popular seasoning used in sweet and meat dishes. It is used to flavour many kinds of baked goods, confections, puddings, potatoes, meats, sausages, sauces and others.

Alternate names

*           English :                        Nutmeg                       

*           Tamil :                         Jaadhikai                      

*           Malayalam :                   Jathikka                        

*           Telugu :                        Jaikaaya / Jajikayi           

*           Kannada :                     Jaika / Jajikai / Jeerake    

*           Hindi :                          Jaiphal                          

*           Bengali :                        Jaiphal                          

*           Gujarati :                      Jayiphal

*           Konkani :                      Jaiphal

*           Marathi :                       Jayphal

*           Oriya :                          Jaiphala

*           Punjabi :                       Jaiphal

*           Kashmiri :                     Zaaphal

*           Urudu :                          Jaiphal

Constituents

Nutmeg contain 7 to 14 percent essential oil, the principal components of which are pinene, camphene and dipentene.

Nutmeg yields about 24 to 30 percent fixed oil called nutmeg butter or oil of mace, the principal component of which is trimyristin.

Following details are  discussed in this article

  • Application
    Global producing regions

  • Production in India

  • Indian import / export
    Price trend
    Global  export 

BIO ADIPIC ACID – TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT EFFORTS

Appearance                              White crystalline solid

CAS No                                   124-04-9

Chemical formula                     (CH2)4(COOH)2

Solubility                                  Soluble in water

Following  details are discussed in this article

  • Application

  • Conventional process

  • Bio based routes for bio adipic acid

  • Research and development efforts by various organizations

WHY NOT ALLOT UNUTILISED LAND IN SICK UNITS FOR INDUSTRIAL PROJECTS ?

One of the stumbling blocks for rapid industrialization in India is the scarcity in the availability of industrial land for setting up projects.

In many cases, agricultural land are sought to be converted as industrial land for setting up projects. Such move have been  strongly criticised and resisted by the  agriculturists and have frequently lead to vigorous protests and  demonstrations, which have turned violent in some cases.

There are hundreds of  sick industrial units all over India which have land and building that remain  unused for several years.  Most of such units are now defaulters of  loan repayment to the financial institutions. While bankruptcy law  has been recently introduced to tackle the problems of the sick industries, it appears to be a time consuming process.

It is appropriate that the Government of India should  bring out legislation  that the sick  units which have unutilized industrial land for more than 5 years should surrender or dispose off the land  for setting up industrial projects

The above subject is further discussed in this article.

ROSNEFT ACQUIRES ESSAR OIL - SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME IN INDIAN INDUSTRY

Russian energy company  Rosneft   has acquired  Essar Oil,  which is the second largest refinery in India. This acquisition  by Rosneft  has caused considerable interest in India, since industry observers wonder as to whether  such acquisition of large Indian companies by overseas organizations would be the shape of things to come in future.

With number of large Indian companies having huge debt  to the financial institutions and with no feasibility of paying back debt  and interest in the foreseeable future, financial companies, mostly public sector  banks, find that their financial stability are getting disturbed. In such circumstances, Government of India have brought bankruptcy  law which means that companies with huge accumulated debt  can be declared as bankrupt with   the owners losing their rights and industry becoming available for sale or takeover.

Though number of such large Indian companies have accumulated debt, almost all of them are operating in areas with high level of relevance to the global industrial economic growth pattern.  Most of them adopt excellent technology  practices.

Considering the scenario, several international companies now find that the takeover of  Indian companies  that are facing bankruptcy  proceedings can be an attractive option for them.

Obviously, such overseas organizations and equity companies abroad would bargain hard to get best of terms from Indian financial institutions and the sick companies.

Acquisition of  Essar Oil  by Rosneft   is the first instance of the overseas organization taking over such large Indian company facing huge debt.

Following details are discussed in this article

  • Essar subsidiaries’ total debt

  • Acquisition by Rosneft and relief for Essar Oil

  • What Rosneft has acquired

REVIVAL POSSIBILITY OF NAGARJUNA OIL CORPORATION

Nagarjuna Oil Corporation (NOCL) is setting up a six million metric tonne per annum  petroleum refinery as a joint venture with State owned Tidco (with a token 2% stake) at Cuddalore in Tamil Nadu.  The debt for the company is  handled by a consortium of banks led by IDBI.  While Nagarjuna Group hold 47%  when they invested Rs.776 crore, the Tata Group, including Tata Petrodyne, have 25% (Rs.411 crore as equity investment) and Trafigura 20%, (Rs.328 crore) with the rest coming from others.

Nearly 58% of the project work was completed in December, 2011, when a shortage of funds stopped work.

Above subject is further discussed in this article.

SOLAR WASTE MANAGEMENT – A GRIM PROBLEM

A 2016 report published by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) projects India as the producer of over 78 million tonnes of solar e-waste by 2050.

While solar technologies enable  to generate enormous amounts of green energy, the components used for generating electricity are themselves not biodegradable. Hence, proper handling of components, after their useful life is over, becomes imperative.

India’s existing rules document—E-Waste Management Rules, 2016—clarifies on the roles and responsibilities of the key stakeholders involved in the e-waste value chain. This is the set of rules referred to in most of the solar power tenders for solar projects in India. However, it does not specifically mention about the issue of management of used components of solar power systems—it only addresses household electronics and not PV panels.

Above subject is further discussed in this article.

RECENT TREND IN GLOBAL BIOCIDES INDUSTRY

Global market

The global market for specialty biocides at the manufacturers’ level had a volume of about 1.4 million metric tonne in 2016, with a value of about $5.7 billion, according to a recent report on biocides by IHS Markit. 

The volume of the biocides market is expected to grow at an average annual rate of about 3% during the period 2016-21. 

Three regions North America, China, and Western Europe made up about 80% of global biocides volume and about 75 to 80% of the value in 2016 .

Following details are discussed in this article

  • Thrust area for application

  • Regional market

  • Regulatory issues

  • Industry trend

  • Global biocide production

  • Use of biocides by application,2016

ANTI DUMPING PAGE

Anti dumping measures introduced in  the last few weeks on the following products are  discussed

  • Anti dumping duty on Chinese products

  • PTFE

  • SBR

  • Styrene

  • Tempered glass

  • Nylon filament yarn

  • Epichlorohydrin

  • Sodium nitrite

  • Solar inputs

NEWS ROUND UP – INTERNATIONAL

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed

  • DOTP, 2-EH

  • High purity H2O2 units in USA

  • Ethane based petchem project in Belgium

  • Polyester plants in Saudi Arabia

  • Algae based omega 3 plant in USA

  • Second generation technology for ethanol– Efforts of Brazil

TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT

Recent developments on the following products are discussed

  • Graphene

  • Coconut oil  use for recycling car plastics

  • Self healing rubber

  • The ‘fatbergs’ in sewers may soon fuel buses

  • A novel yeast strain to ferment the glucose and make ethanol

CHINA NEWS

The recent developments in China on the following products/events are discussed

  • Organic peroxides plant at Ningbo

  • Coal based polygeneration plant

  • Polygeneration project

  • DMDS plant

  • Coal chemical project

  • Nano calcium carbonate plant

 NEWS ROUND UP – INDIA

The recent developments on the following products/events are discussed

  • IOC’s LNG terminal in Tamil Nadu

  • Project plans of Hindustan Copper

  • Composite LPG cylinders

  • Floating production system in gas field

AGRO CHEMICAL PAGE

Recent developments  in the agro  chemical fields are  discussed in the following  articles

  • Clove oil from tulsi

  • World’s first GM sugarcane variety

ENERGY PAGE

The recent developments in  energy field is discussed in this article.

  • ONGC plans to double its gas output in next five to six years

  • TN wind power tariff at Rs.3.42 per unit, lowest in India

ENVIRONMENTAL PAGE

The recent developments in  environment  field is discussed in this article.

  • EPA releases 2018 biofuel volumes proposal

  • Ban of palm biodiesel in Norway

OTHER ARTICLES

EX-FACTORY PRICE OF CHEMICALS IN CHINA - PERIOD AUGUST 2017

TENDER

CHEMICALS IMPORTED AT THE CHENNAI PORT- DURING THE MONTH OF JUNE 2017