PITTSBURGH (Oct. 26, 2011)—Lanxess A.G. said it is investing $7 million in state-of-the-art finishing technology for EPDM rubber at its Orange, Texas, factory.
The company said the project is under way and should be complete in the third quarter of 2012.
Guenter Weymans, head of Lanxess' Technical Rubber Products business, said the investment and ongoing maintenance improvements enhances the Orange facility's reliability, productivity, efficiency and quality. The EPDM plant has the capacity to produce 60,000 metric tons of rubber annually, and the firm didn't indicate if the new project will increase that capability.
Lanxess—which calls it's the “leading producer of EPDM rubber in the world”—also produces the elastomer at facilities in Geleen, the Netherlands; Marl, Germany; and Triunfo, Brazil. The firm acquired EPDM producer DSM Elastomers in May, and is in the process of converting half the EPDM production at its Geleen site to the Keltan ACE technology it obtained in the purchase of the DSM N.V. division.
The company said it also expects to produce commercial amounts of EPDM from bio-based ethylene by the end of 2011 at its Triunfo factory. The ethylene is derived from Brazilian sugar cane, and the Keltan Eco rubber will be the first bio-based EPDM marketed in the world.