Baton Rouge, Louisiana-Albemarle Corp. announced 19 June that it plans to build a facility to make phosphorus-based flame retardant at its technology and business centre in Nanjing, China.
Products from the new plant, which is expected to be fully operational in the second half of 2007, "will help meet growing global demand for fire-resistant polymer systems and resins for construction and electronics materials, " said Albemarle, in its announcement.
From this new plant, Albemarle will supply phosphorus flame retardants for rigid and flexible polyurethane foams and for resin blends such as PC/ABS and PPE/HIPS, used in electronic enclosures. Albemarle said the products, which will be marketed worldwide, should "help meet strong demand particularly in Asia, where construction and electronics markets are thriving."
"We are expanding our operations for an expanding market," commented Luc van Muylem, Albemarle Division vice president of Flame Retardants, in Albemarle's statement. Van Muylem pointed out that Albemarle is already offering technical service from its Nanjing site, primarily for local construction and furniture customers, and will soon do the same for customers in electronics plastics.
Albemarle started building the Nanjing technology and business development centre in December 2005, and it should be fully operational in the third quarter of 2006. The centre will provide technical support for Albemarle's customers for polymer additives and catalysts in the Asia Pacific region, with additional research to expand uses of its additives.
"This manufacturing investment … further strengthens Albemarle's flame retardant leadership position, especially in the rapidly growing Asia Pacific market," said John Dabkowski, Albemarle vice president of Polymer Additives, in Albemarle's statement.
Albemarle claims global leadership in flame retardants for polymers, through its brominated, mineral and phosphorus-based technologies, and its "commitment to consumer fire safety advocacy and product stewardship."