Japanese amine catalyst supplier Tosoh Corp. is offering a catalyst, Toyocat RX24 designed to cut emissions of VOCs (volatile organic compounds) from polyurethane foams.
“Normally reactive amines give materials with lower durability, but RX24 gives better durability, with reduced VOCs,” said Yusuke Ihara, manager of the amine catalysts department for Tosoh.
Tosoh makes amine catalysts for all types of foam, rigid, foam and CASE (coatings, adhesive, sealant and elastomer) uses, Ihara said.
It has a focus on using ethylene amines, as Tosoh is one of the major manufacturers of these, along with other suppliers such as Huntsman, Dow and BASF.
Ihara and his colleague Hiroyuki Kiso, technical manager for the urethane and amine group, at Tosoh’s Nanyo research laboratory, pointed out that making reactive amines is one way they can give low VOCs, and these catalysts have been in the market for many years.
Tosoh makes a wide range of these, such as RX 70 for ester foams and FX 4/20/24 for ether foams. A recent development is CX20, for high resilience moulded foam, “giving excellent cure,” and a delayed action to allow the user to tailor closed mould time, Ihara said. Toyocat CX20 also gives fast cure, and rapid demould.
Tosoh offers catalysts for rigid foam also, with types to give good flowability, and good K factor, he added.
Toyocat B51 a balanced type with two actions — gelling and blowing, while B80 is for blowing rigid foam with a good K factor.
Ihara and Kiso noted, in a 7 Sept interview at the UTECH Asia 2011 event in Shanghai, China, that customers are asking for reduced demould times and increased conductivity. And Tosoh has products to help tailor these properties.
In flexible foam Tosoh is promoting the RX24 reactive catalyst and RX 4 for slabstock foam for lower fogging, low emissions compared with TEDA and DMEA.
The Tosoh executive noted that business is good, and said of course that as a Japanese company, Tosoh has an Asian focus. Its production is largely based in Japan, with some blending facilities at its site in Shanghai, Ihara said.
Tosoh sells from 10 to 20 percent of its materials in China, but 20-30 percent of its sales are also in Europe, with some 20 percent in North America.