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Plant Expansions: Domo to increase capacity in Germany; Kolon/BASF jv starts up POM ops in South Korea

Domo to increase capacity in Germany

In view of the growth from the automotive sector, companies producing engineering resins are also beefing up capacities.

Germany’s Domo Engineering Plastics, a business unit of Domo Chemicals, that supplies PA6 and PA66 compounds has grown significantly over the last five years and is now increasing production capacity at its manufacturing plant and headquarters in Premnitz, Germany, to address growing demand.

A fully integrated PA6 compounding unit, its facility in Germany has a capacity of 30,000 tonnes/year and Domo has announced a capacity expansion of 20,000 tonnes, which will be operational by mid-2019. The German compounder also opened an innovation centre in Mumbai, India, earlier this year, as part of its growth strategy.

“We are not only expanding our production capacity. The investment is also a milestone in the company’s production and logistics digitalisation,” says Marcel Müller, Plant Manager Domo Engineering Plastics. Together with the expansion, the company will introduce a new lean manufacturing structure to offer higher service quality, flexibility and transparency to its clients.

Also, focusing on sustainability, Domo has developed a new package of Light Engineering Solutions that includes not only new low density materials and composites sheets for metal and thermoset replacement, but also prototyping and simulation services to redesign and rethink applications.

“The automotive segment is one of our priorities. With this investment we are able to optimize our support to German OEM’s and Tier 1 suppliers,” says Ludovic Tonnerre, Global Business Unit Manager. Domo Chemicals, based in Leuna, Germany, has at date a turnover of EUR900 million with 900 employees.

BASF jv starts up POM ops in South Korea

Meanwhile, in other news, Kolon BASF innoPOM Inc., the 50:50 joint venture between Kolon Plastics and Germany’s BASF established in 2016, has started operations at its new polyoxymethylene (POM) production plant in Gimcheon, South Korea.

The new production with a capacity of 70,000 tonnes/year, combined with Kolon Plastics’s existing POM production capacity of 80,000 tonnes/year, creates the world’s largest POM production facility, with a total annual capacity of 150,000 tonnes/year. Construction of the US$220 million plant, which began in April 2016, lasted for 27 months.

The plant combines BASF’s quality control system and its energy-saving technology with Kolon Plastics’s efficient and stable production capabilities, built over more than 20 years, to produce best-in-class POM products.

Kolon BASF innoPOM will be able to provide a stable supply of POM to both Kolon and BASF, each with their own sales network, enabling the two companies to cater to increasing market demand.

The shared facility, with separate production systems customised to serve each company’s customers, will enable a highly competitive form of cooperation. Kocetal from Kolon and Ultraform from BASF will be produced at the new plant using technologies from the two companies. BASF will be applying its global property and quality control standards throughout the process to ensure the same high quality as volumes produced in Germany.

“The new plant we have built together with Kolon Plastics sets an industry benchmark for the production of POM. It employs innovative environmental management standards that improve production efficiency, resulting in less energy use. With BASF’s first POM production in Asia, we will be able to provide a stable supply of high-quality POM to the Asia Pacific region, as well as to the rest of the world,” said Raimar Jahn, President, Performance Materials, BASF.

“The joint venture leverages the strengths of each company and is a great example of how partners can work together to generate significant synergies and strengthen our global market position. We hope to continue this partnership in other areas of business as well,” said Yeong-Bom Kim, joint-representative of Kolon BASF innoPOM.

POM resins are engineering plastics used in complex and highly durable components. Their high strength and resilience, friction performance and chemical resistance enable a broad range of applications in automotive manufacturing as well as in electric and electronic goods. 42% of the world’s demand is used for manufacturing key vehicle components such as fuel pumps and safety belts. Global chemical companies are focusing on developing lighter and stronger high-quality engineering plastics, supporting the growing trend towards lightweight vehicle materials for greater fuel efficiency.

(IMA)


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