Sao Paolo, Brazil -- Two successful experiments with applications of polyurethane foams based on the Ecomate blowing agent -- methyl formate -- to replace hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) are being presented by customers of Brazil-based Purcom at a meeting in Thailand.
This event, 'Alternative Technologies Exhibition for Climate Protection,' promoted by the United Nations (UN) is being held 21-24 July at the Bangkok Convention Centre in Thailand.
The two examples of HCFC replacement are: thermal insulation in refrigerated trucks of the Folle-Randon company; and the rigid polyurethane insulation in walls of low-income housing units built by the Santa Catarina-based Fischer construction company, as part of the Brazilian government's Minha Casa, Minha Vida ("My Home, My Life") programme.
Sao Paulo-based systems supplier Purcom, winner of a 2011 Technology Award from the Brazilian Association of Chemical Industries (Abiquim), was the only Brazilian company invited to participate at the conference, which will gather representatives from around 100 countries.
The Thai meeting is aimed at disseminating and developing technologies capable of replacing HCFCs worldwide. HCFCs destroy the ozone layer that protects the earth's atmosphere and lessens the greenhouse effect caused by pollution. These gases have been proscribed in several countries, and are expected to be banned from the Brazilian market in 2013, as set out by the Montreal Protocol.
Ecomate was developed by Foam Supplies with the support of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
Purcom said the applications it is taking to Bangkok were selected by UN specialists in the Montreal Protocol, and fit the objectives of the conference, titled 'Advancing Ozone & Protection Climate Technologies: Next Steps.'
The event was created to bring together industry, policymakers, environmental organisations, and academia to share information and expertise on various alternatives and approaches to ensure that the phase-out of CFCs and HCFCs is done in such a way as to limit the climate contribution of materials with high global warming potential.
The event is sponsored by the UN Environment Programme, UN Development Programme, the US Government, and the Alliance for Responsible Atmospheric Policy.
Purcom, founded in 2002, claim to be the market leader in independent PU-systems companies in Brazil. Purcom ended fiscal year 2011 with sales revenue of over Real 101 million ($50 million), and currently produces roughly 1000 tonnes of PU per month.