LUDWIGSHAFEN, Germany—Diversified German chemicals and plastics producer BASF A.G. is investing in a fellow German company that specializes in waste tire pyrolysis, with an eye toward using pyrolysis oil as a feedstock for plastics processing.
As part of a larger "ChemCycling" project, BASF is investing close to $18 million in Pyrum Innovations A.G, a Dillingen, Germany-based company that is in the process of expanding its pyrolysis plant there beyond its current 10,000 metric tons of end-of-life tires a year capacity.
The deal with Pyrum includes BASF's commitment to buy most of the pyrolysis oil and process it into new chemical products using a "mass balance" approach, BASF said. The resulting products mainly will be for customers from the plastics industry that are looking for high-quality and functional plastics based on recycled materials.
Part of Pyrum's business model is its intention to build additional tire pyrolysis plants together with interested partners, BASF said, a collaborative setup that will accelerate the use of Pyrum's proprietary technology in serial production.
Future investors in the technology can bank on BASF's pledge to buy pyrolysis oil to produce high-performance chemical products, thus serving to close the loop for post-consumer plastic waste. Waste tires fall within the definition of post-consumer plastic waste according to DIN EN ISO 14021:2016-07, BASF said.
BASF and Pyrum anticipate that production capacities of up to 100,000 tons of pyrolysis oil derived from waste tires could be built up within the next years together with additional partners.