Orion Engineered Carbons S.A. has announced that it is increasing the prices of all its rubber carbon black products sold in the EMEA region effective 1 August 2021 or “as permitted by customer contracts”.
Evonik Industries has developed a new, active filler for the tyre industry that significantly improves the traction of winter tyres in snowy and slushy conditions, thereby increasing safety. Ultrasil 4000 GR is the first Low Surface Area (LSA) silica that also offers very good dispersibility. This enables very high filler levels in the tyre tread, further improving traction compared to tyres using conventional silica.
Upstream suppliers to the tyre manufacturing industry Nynas, Cabot and Evonik have received some of the top ratings in the 2021 EcoVadis auditing process. Specifically, these three firms all ranked in the top 1 per cent of their peers, earning platinum status. Meanwhile, carbon black supplier Birla Carbon received the EcoVadis’ gold accreditation.
Evonik reports that it has developed a new silica that it says is particularly suitable for use in truck and bus (TBR) tyres. In contrast to passenger car tyres, TBR tyres use mainly natural rubber, which, in combination with silane, places special requirements on the silica. With Evonik’s latest silica/silane development, fuel savings could be as high 8 per cent, the company said, which cuts costs and is better for the environment.
Production of precipitated silica has commenced at the Evonik Industries plant in South Carolina, USA. The facility, set up with an investment of around US$120 million, will primarily meet demand from tyre manufacturers in North America for Evonik’s Ultrasil products. More than 40 new jobs have been created by the project.
According to a statement issued by chemical company Evonik Industries this week, its C4 integrated production facility in Antwerp site was successfully restarted earlier this month. It added that “thanks to the extraordinary performance of the operating team,” the facility was able to resume normal operation in mid-June.
Evonik Industries AG has secured improved conditions through the refinancing of its existing syndicated credit facility with a group of 18 banks. The new credit facility with an unchanged volume of 1.75 billion euros has a term of five years, with the option of two extensions of one year each. It will end in 2024 at the latest.
Evonik and Wacker Chemie are among the investors in a $335 million fund intended to finance young start-up firms in Germany, both companies announced. The country’s Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy and the German state-run KfW Development Bank are the main investors in the High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF) III, which will also help the start-ups put their business concepts into practice.
At this year’s Tire Technology Expo, Evonik will present its new cradle to grave Life Cycle Assessment of the environmental impact resulting from tyre treads based on silica/silane and S-SBR in comparison to tyre treads based on carbon black and E-SBR rubber.
Plans to build a precipitated silica production facility in the US state of South Carolina have been officially confirmed by Evonik Industries. The new plant will be located in the Bushy Park industrial area near Charleston, close to the factories of a number of tyre makers, including Michelin, Bridgestone, Continental, Trelleborg and (as of 2017) Giti Tire. Evonik Industries will invest approximately US$120 million in the plant, which will be completed in 2018.
The acquisition of a new business will see Evonik Industries AG extend its silica activities beyond tyres and other industrial applications. Evonik has acquired the silica business of US-based firm J.M. Huber for $630 million, a deal it says will enable Evonik to “expand its position in North America and Asia in this profitable and resilient business.”
The new silanes competence centre Evonik Industries has built over the last two years is now officially open. The centre, at the company’s Rheinfelden site in Germany, was set up with a “low two-digit million euro” investment and will help Evonik continue to develop its research and development in the area of silane technology. The centre’s 100 employees are housed in a four-storey, 3,500 square metre building that contains state-of-the-art laboratories and, in addition to its R&D function, is now home to Evonik’s Applied Technology, Analytics, and Quality Management departments.
Production has commenced at Evonik Industries’ new precipitated silica plant in Brazil. The facility in Americana, São Paulo state is the first to produce highly dispersible silica for the South American tyre industry, and was set up with a “mid-double-digit million euro” investment. Evonik has yet to comment on the plant’s initial or maximum production capacity, however it declares its global capacity for precipitated and fume silicas, and for matting agents, to be 600,000 tonnes a year.
Last May, Germany’s Evonik Industries reported its intention to set up a precipitated silica plant in the USA, near major tyre factories located in the country’s southeast. US newspaper The Post and Courier now reports that this facility will be built in Berkeley County, South Carolina and constructed with an investment of US$129.4 million. The publication writes that while Evonik has yet to officially confirm its choice of location, the company’s plans can be found in South Carolina state agency documents.
Carbon black supplier Orion Engineered Carbons S.A. shares that its acquisition of the remaining 64 per cent share in the Qingdao Evonik Chemical Co. Ltd. (QECC) carbon black business in Qingdao, China has now been completed.