by Louise McHenry, UTI staff
The leading international exhibition and conference for the global polyurethanes industry, UTECH, returns this year to the Maastricht Exhibition and Conference Centre (MECC) in Maastricht, the Netherlands, from 17- 19 April 2012.
Organised by Crain Communications Ltd, the publisher of Urethanes Technology International, the three-day event brings together top decision makers from across the sector.
The following pages continue our preview of what exhibitors will be showing at the accompanying UTECH Europe 2012 exhibition.
The UTECH Europe conference will feature over 90 presentations by technical experts from the R&D departments of the world’s leading companies.
Starting the proceedings will be a Keynote presentation from Jiansheng Ding, chairman of Yantai Wanhua Polyurethanes Co. Ltd, China, leading into a Plenary Session celebrating the 75th Anniversary of the invention of polyurethanes chemistry, dated from Prof Otto Bayer’s initial patent in 1937.
A session titled ‘Green Chemistry,’ comprising 12 papers, will follow, detailing the latest advances in sustainable manufacturing processes for key polyurethane raw materials.
‘Green Chemistry’ is the first of 11 different sessions in the conference. The opening presentations from Bayer MaterialScience will detail the latest state of play in its work converting waste carbon dioxide into useful polyurethane raw materials.
Other papers will highlight advances in other areas of ‘green chemistry,’ including the latest work from Green Urethanes Ltd of the UK in raising incorporation levels of renewably resourced polyols in flexible foam formulations to 100 percent, while other specialists will detail their latest developments using a wide range of natural and renewable resources.
Developments in the use of polyurethane based products in building and construction include a presentation in the Innovation Session on the first day (17 April) on a novel method for making decorative elements for the construction industry, presented by Cannon of Italy, and a paper on the growth of bridge-deck waterproofing from Mitsubishi Plastics of Japan.
Low-energy building insulation An afternoon dedicated to construction insulation (18 April) will include presentations on blowing agents, flame retardants and other key raw materials. New developments in manufacturing techniques for rigid-foam insulated products, including metal-faced panels, will form a key part of this session, as well as papers discussing more specialised applications such as customised polyurethane systems for oil and gas pipelines and one component rigid PU foams dispensed from pressure vessels.
Construction-related developments will also feature in the session on Safety, Health and Environmental Issues (17 April, 2pm) organised by ISOPA (the European Isocyanate and Polyol Producers Association), such as the presentation by PU Europe on polyurethane as a sustainable insulation material. This features the latest report on the ‘Passiv Haus’ concept using polyurethane materials to create a dwelling with near-zero energy consumption.
Use of polyurethane in automotive applications will also be showcased at the conference. BASF will open the Innovations Session on 17 April with a presentation on CosyPUR, which it describes as ‘the ultimate foaming concept for flexible moulded applications,’ and there will be a presentation from Bayer MaterialScience on advanced lightweight composites for automotive parts.
The conference programme on 18 April includes a dedicated Flexible Foams session, which covers gelling catalysts, halogen-free combustion-modified flexible foam, and additives to reduce emissions and enhance hydrophilicity. Antoine Fluhr of Johnson Controls Inc., Belgium, will discuss the latest developments in humid heat-aging of polyurethane foams for car seats.
Joop Wuestenenk, Technical Development Manager of ICL–IP Europe BV, will give a presentation on sustainable flame retardant developments for low-emission foam systems, and experts from SABA Dinxperlo BV will discuss the future in foam bonding, adhesive technology and systems.
The conference session dedicated to CASE products (coatings, adhesives, sealants and elastomers) on 19 April will include a presentation from Huntsman Polyurethanes on modelling the influence of microstructure on sound-absorbing properties of PU foam, an important concern in the automotive sector.
Other highlights in the programme include a session from the Polyurea Development Association Europe on commercial and technical developments in the polyurea market.
The conference programme was compiled by David Reed, founder editor of Urethanes Technology magazine and co-creator of the UTECH events, and is supported by ISOPA (the European Disocyanate and Polyols Producers Association) and the PDA Europe.
Selected stands and exhibits
ALBEMARLE Stand 1034 Albemarle Europe Sprl will be showcasing its portfolio of fire safety solutions, including a reduced odour version of its Ethacure 300 liquid aromatic diamine curative used in both hot and room-temperature polyurethane cast elastomers and sealants.
The company has also achieved REACH registration for its Ethacure 90 one coat UV-stable aliphatic curative, which won the 2011 Centre for Polyurethanes innovation award.
It will show its full range of polymer solutions for polyurethanes at UTECH Europe, and for the first time will showcase its antioxidant solutions for the PU industry.
BIO8 LTD Stand 1780 Bio8 Ltd has developed a solvent based on natural materials that can be used to break down polyurethane residues, as an alternative to N-methylpyrrolidone (NMP), methylene chloride, and other materials.
The material works very quickly and is classified as non-hazardous under REACH, the EU’s chemicals regulation, claims Bio8 managing director Andrew Hiron.
Hiron says the material works by breaking down the chemical structure of many polymeric compounds, making them swell and rupturing the bonds.
Bio8 says the product is currently being used in many applications across the world and also by some of the largest names in the industry.
The product, called Envii, is available as a liquid (705) for soaking or as a gel (706), the latter for cleaning machinery and parts that cannot be soaked or for use on vertical surfaces where a gel gives the contact time required.
Hiron says the product has been used for: flexible and rigid polyurethane foam; PU and epoxy adhesives; polyurea; cured isocyanate; cured PU elastomers; and spray foam insulation.
CANNON Stand 1240 Cannon SpA will present its latest technological developments in the field of PU and composites, including high and low-pressure PU mixing heads and dosing units.
It will introduce its new vacuum-based foaming technology, Cannon VAI (vacuum assisted injection), a major achievement in the field of domestic refrigerators, used in combination with the Pascal PU chemical system developed by Dow Europe.
It will also show its Cannon JL mixing head, which the company says brings important operational advantages, such as a more laminar flow, higher output and no injectors to calibrate and operate.
The Italian company also has a complete range of products designed for its high pressure injection technology for fast production of moulded epoxy composite parts, as well as equipment for the production of composite parts for the road, railway and construction.
CRODA COATINGS Stand 2137 Croda Coatings & Polymers of Goole, UK, will introduce its extended range of 100- percent bio-based Priplast polyester polyols for PU applications, which now includes the semi-crystalline Priplast 3293.
Priplast 3293 is 100-percent bio-based and its availability broadens the amorphous Priplast range, Croda says.
The range gives polyurethanes more durability with a unique combination of thermo-oxidative, UV and hydrolysis resistance, the company claims. It also offers moisture repellency, flexibility at low temperatures, adhesion to a wide range of substrates, including low polarity plastics, as well as excellent flow properties with efficient substrate wetting.
Dr Angela Smits from the company will present a paper in the green chemistry session during the UTECH conference.
DUT KOREA Stand 2145 DUT Korea has recently launched a new metering pump with a duralumin case, which the company says is lightweight, quiet and produces an efficient result. It is a 100-percent replacement of a Rexroth pump.
DUT also specialises in high-pressure mixing heads, from double-tilted injection heads to L-Tyre and R-Tyre mixing heads.
The company says that last year it sold hundreds of mixing heads in 52 different countries for applications such as discontinuous panels, insulation and mattresses.
EKOSYSTEM Stand 1020 Ekosystem PU Technology of Italy will present its range of low- and high-pressure foam machines, as well as its polyurethane turnkey plants. The company says it is able to retrofit any kind of existing plant for pentane use. It offers a technical service for customers and also spare parts.
GUSBI SPA Stand 1900 From 1968, Gusbi of Italy has made machines for the PU footwear industry, to make unit soles or direct-onto-upper shoe soles. It says it has sold more than 1000 machines all over the world.
The company specialises in linear and rotating automatic equipments for the production of PU technical items such as seals for air/oil filters, spring-aids, armrests, bicycle saddles and remote-control housings.
It also provides high-quality moulds, qualified technical and commercial assistance and a constant development of new production technologies.
H&S ANLAGENTECHNIK Stand 1550 H&S Anlagentechnik GmbH of Sulingen, Germany, will showcase its range of reactors and technology for chemical recycling of flexible and rigid PU residues in polyol.
H&S says that the technology enables the generation of high-quality recycled polyols which can substitute for conventional base polyols at up to 20-30 percent on a production scale. The company says the foams produced with the recycled polyols are of the same quality as other foams.
KEMI SPA Stand 1025 Kemi’s main focus will be on its newly released products: water-based and silicone- free solutions for technical and automotive PU applications. These products are ready-to-use release agents based on water-based emulsions of synthetic polymers with excellent performance on all PU foams. Kemi of Novara, Italy, says its solutions, which were first introduced 5-10 years ago, are environmental friendly.
Kemi will also present its water and solvent-based varnishes for integral and rigid PU foams for the in-mould coating process.
The company recently opened new production facilities in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, to supply the Brazilian and South American PU market.
MOMENTIVE Stand 1630 Momentive Performance Materials of Albany, New York, will launch the 50th anniversary of its Niax brand of silicone additives, catalysts and process modifiers that can be used in PU foam formulations to optimise performance and processing.
“Since introducing the first nonhydrolyzable silicone surfactant for polyurethane foam in 1962, Momentive has steadily expanded its Niax offering for slab, rigid, moulded and speciality foams,” says Tony Lanchak, of Momentive.
Momentive says it is constantly, researching, developing and testing new technologies that can improve the performance of slab foam found in furniture and bedding, rigid foam used in household appliances and in the construction industry, molded foam for automotive interior use, and speciality foam for a variety of microcellular applications, such as carpet underlay.
BASF POLYURETHANES Stand 1390 BASF says that due to the market situation, which is currently rather volatile, it will use the trade fair extensively as a forum for dialogue. The company calls on all customers to use UTECH as an opportunity to engage in intensive discussion.
At its stand, BASF will show a large selection of its sustainable PU system solutions for the construction business and the automotive industry. The company says it will show how to save resources sustainably and show how cars can be made lighter, insulation material more efficient and refrigerators more economic.
BASF also offers an assortment of highly efficient catalysers, polyols, additives and solvents from its portfolio of chemical intermediate products.
The chemical giant will be giving a number of papers in the UTECH conference including those on polyurea, customised PU systems for oil & gas pipelines and foaming concepts for flexible moulded applications.
KEZAL Stand 852 Italian chemical company Kezal intends to manufacture only ecosustainable products for the PU industry in the future. At UTECH Europe, the company will show its R&D efforts on a wide range of water-based products.
With almost 30 years of experience in PU, Kezal says it strongly believes that “the future belongs to water.” Luigi Carlo Mariani, owner and founder of Kezal (pictured), says his motto is to “Keep up with the times and carry on innovating.” He believes every company should invest more in reducing VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and improving employees’ working conditions.
In its two production sites in Italy, in Milan and in Belforte del Chienti, Kezal makes release agents, varnishes, master batches and a wide range of other products.
NOTEDOME LTD Stand 1520 Notedome is a global supplier of cast PU systems. The Coventry, UK-based company will showcase its Neuthane AR acid-resistant systems, Neucone concrete mould systems, Neuthane 5100 doming systems, and Neuthane 800GR MDI quasi series of nonmercury systems.
The company introduced Neuthane AR in 2011 for use in steel manufacturing, particularly for pickling lines. Its Neucone systems are room-temperature cured systems with high-tear resistance, and are designed to cover a wide range of hardnesses.
In 2011, Notedome invested €2 million in an additional production and warehouse facility, which is due to be commissioned in 2012. The facility will service the “continued growth” of the company’s Neuthane range.
PDA EUROPE Stand 1118 Since its formation in 2007, PDA Europe’s aim has been to promote polyurea technology in Europe and adjacent regions and to pursue the interests of the European polyurea industry.
At UTECH Europe, PDA aims to introduce polyurea technology to a wider European market. The association says the two-component spray technology yields elastomers that provide excellent waterproofing properties along with superior mechanical and chemical stability. PDA says polyurea is becoming more and more the technology of choice for protective films that have to withstand extreme use conditions and need to be applied within the shortest possible time.
The association will present case studies of successful coating jobs and introduce the successful training programmes it is organising throughout Europe, providing in-depth education for surface treatment and spray application.
PDA Europe is hosting a polyurea session at the UTECH Europe conference, with comprehensive information about new raw materials, polyurea systems, spray equipment and recent case studies executed by PDA Europe member companies.
SHEPHERD CHEM Stand 1500 Shepherd Chemical Co. will present its BiCAT catalysts for CASE (coating, adhesives, sealants and elastomers) applications.
It will also showcase its speciality chemical capabilities.
SUNYANG TPU Stand 860 The Chinese producer of thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) will showcase its range of products, which it says are green and have good physical properties.
SYSTEMHOUSE Stand 2285 Systemhouse Sprl will present its polyisocyanurate foam for continuous production of metal-faced sandwich panels, Systofoam IF51.
Systemhouse of Mouscron, Belgium, will also show its spray foam for floor-insulation, which the Belgian company says has “improved compression properties at economical density.” This includes its Systospray US 457W sprayfoam formulation, as well as its Systofoam UI502B system developed for use simple injection machines with a 1:1 volume ratio between polyol and isocyanate.
The company says the system passes the EN11925-2 flame test and has excellent flowability.
TEKNIK KIMYA AS Stand 2235 The Turkish manufacturer of release agents, pastes and coatings will highlights its range of water-based, environmentally friendly release agents, as well as its high solid release agents, which have low emissions of VOCs, Teknik Kimya claims. Its portfolio includes release concentrates with low carbon dioxide emissions, as well as non-toxic phthalate-free liquid colour pastes, and inmould coatings with faster production processes and better finish.
TOSOH Stand 1531 For more than 30 years, Tosoh Europe BV has supplied triethylenediamine (TEDA) and speciality amine catalysts under the brand name Toyocat to the PU industry.
The Japanese company offers a comprehensive range of gelling and blowing catalysts in fields such as flexible foams, rigid foams, footwear and CASE.
Tosoh will show its Toyocat-RX series of reactive catalysts, which it says are widely used for VOC reduction, as well as its DB series of highly thermo-sensitive amine catalysts which are applied in metal-free PU.
At the UTECH conference, Tosoh will present a paper on a strong gelling reactive catalyst for amine emission-free flexible PU foams.
WANHUA-BORSODCHEM Stand 1610, H4 Wanhua-BorsodChem says its attendance at UTECH Europe allows it to further reinforce its global position. The company says that it will show a number of innovative PU products during the event, representing the variety of isocyanates, polyols and several PU catalysts produced by Wanhua and BorsodChem.
The company says it is committed to providing green, tailor-made and differentiated products for the polyurethane industry.
The keynote speech beginning the event will be delivered by Jiansheng Ding, chairman of BorsodChem & Wanhua Industrial Group. The speech will focus on his views about the world of PU and on the advantages of global partnership.
WINTECH/HEYNEN Stand 1160 Wintech, which claims to have invented the oscillating blade process for cutting flexible PU, also builds fast wire machines for cutting rigid PU and other insulating materials for process industries, especially oil and gas plants around the world. In these machines Wintech uses its own Profiler software, which it says maximises the cut quality and the efficiency of material and labour. At the exhibition, the Australian company will show the latest version of its software, as well as a “repowering” module for older machines.
Wintech will be showing alongside machinery distributor Heynen Systems of the Netherlands.
VSE Stand 1400 VSE Volumentechnik GmbH will present its new RS series of helical screw flow meters.
This product was launched in 2011. RS, which stands for rotor sensor, has a newly developed sensor systems, and works at frequencies up to 100 kHz, with high functionality through additional programmable functions.
VSE says the RS series’ advantages are that it has high-precision, with gentle fluid measurement, as well as pulsation-free measurement.
SOLVAY FLUOR Stand 1660 Solvay Fluor GmbH, a globally operating business unit of the international Solvay Group, is a leading manufacturer of third generation blowing agents and reactive brominated flame-retardant polyols.
Solvay will highlight its participation in the Solar Impulse project, which it joined in 2004.
Solar Impulse is a lightweight airplane powered exclusively by solar energy.
The design of the Solar Impulse cockpit must be lightweight and mechanically stable, Solvay says.
It adds that the cockpit should also conserve ambient temperature despite variable outside temperatures ranging from -56°C to 130°C.
Solvay’s Solkane 365 blowing agent was used to produce the polyurethane foam for the cockpit of the Solar Impulse. The resulting optimised foam fulfils all technical requirements, Solvay claims.
PUMIX SRL Stand 1060 PUMix will exhibit the latest evolution of its mixing and pouring heads for its PU elastomer dispensing machines. It will display sample PU items, made by its customers using PUMix machines.
It will introduce its castable urethane dispensing machines and PU gel processing equipment, as well as its automatic rotary plants. PUMix’s castable urethane dispensing machines can meter, mix and dispense PU elastomer systems, MDI/TDI and polyether/polyester. The modular structures can vary between 2-4 components, allowing customers to adapt one machine to different needs.
PUMix’s gel processing equipment has been developed to run gel systems, from degassing, metering and mixing to dispensing and moulding. The same machine can be used for different applications such as medical, footwear, interior, padding, cushioning as well as in combination with other PU materials including flexible and viscoelastic foam, PUMix says.
The Italian company’s rotary plants are used for automatic and high-scale production of PU moulded items.
Urethanes Technology International Stand 851 Urethanes Technology International is the premier magazine for the polyurethanes industry, publishing six issues per year of news, features and analysis on all aspects of the global PU industry, from raw material and machinery suppliers to processors. For over 20 years, UTI has had access to the latest news and developments from all the top players in the industry, as well as innovations and technology developments from smaller companies across the globe. As well as its magazines, UTI offers a daily news service on its website and sends a regular email newsletter packed full of the latest stories to subscribers.
DAY 1 Tuesday 17 April
Auditorium 10.00 Opening Remarks and keynote presentation 10.40 Plenary session
- Room A 14.00 Green Chemistry Afternoon,
- Room B 14.00 Market Session 15.30 Innovation Session
Conference close c 17.30
DAY 2 Wednesday 18 April
- Room A 10.00 Flexible Foams Session Morning,
- Room B 10.00 Rigid Foams, Appliance Session
- Room A 14.00 ISOPA Session: Safety, Health and Environmental Sustainability Issues Afternoon,
- Room B 14.00 Rigid Foams, Building & Construction Conference close c.17.30
DAY 3, Thursday 19 April
- Room A 10.00 Polyureas Session Morning,
- Room B 10.00 CASE Session
Conference close 13.15