Growers, suppliers and manufacturers of both natural and synthetic rubbers are feeling the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, with demand for both commodities decreasing significantly in the first quarter of 2020.
We haven’t heard a great deal from Lanxess since it spun off its Tire & Specialty Rubbers (TSR) and the High Performance Elastomers (HPE) business units into the Arlanxeo joint venture in 2016. But the company, which sold its 50 per cent share in Arlanxeo a year and a half ago, is still very much active as a supplier to the tyre industry. Later this month, Lanxess will showcase its tyre manufacturing solutions at Tire Technology Expo.
Working together with a Japanese university, Sumitomo Rubber Industries, Ltd. (SRI) has established a new technique for observing materials contained within tyre rubber. This process differs from existing methods as it enables an evaluation of the actual rubber used in mass-produced tyres rather than relying upon processed test samples. The company behind the Falken tyre brand foresees the technique facilitating the development of tyres with superior performance characteristics.
Tatneft’s acquisition of Sibur’s petrochemical plant in Togliatti, Russia has been completed. This concludes the process initiated by the signing of an agreement of intent between the two parties at the end of August 2019.`
Arlanxeo reports that it has successfully ramped-up sales of EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) rubber produced in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and marketed under the Keltan KSA brand name. Marketing and sales of the new EPDM grades are based on an agreement concluded between Arlanxeo and Saudi Aramco in 2018, while collaboration has been further enhanced by the take-over of full ownership of Arlanxeo by Saudi Aramco beginning of 2019.
Anyone who’s racked up a few miles in the tyre industry will be familiar with what some call the ‘magic triangle’ of performance – the relationship between wet traction and braking, rolling resistance and wear, and the role compounding plays in helping the protagonists live in harmony. But Trinseo considers this three-pointed model a relic. We recently spoke with Samer Al Jabi, global business director of Trinseo’s Synthetic Rubber business segment, to find out why.
Synthetic rubber and chemicals company Asahi Kasei is relocating its European headquarters. Asahi Kasei Europe (AKEU) will remain in Düsseldorf, Germany, however in the second half of 2020 will move to a location in Düsseldorf harbour. In this new location, the company intends to consolidate its sales, marketing and R&D activities, thereby further enhancing its business approach to the European automotive industry.
Trinseo, the global plastics, latex binder, and synthetic rubber manufacturer, is introducing a new grade of multifunctionalized S-SBR called Sprintan 918S, at the Tire Technology Expo from March 5-7 in Hanover, Germany.
Polymer producer DuPont has announce that it will increase its Zytel prices globally. Effective from 1 October, or as soon as contracts allow, DuPont Transportation & Advanced Polymers is increasing the price of Zytel products by the equivalent of $550 per metric tonne.
On 10 August 2018 China’s Ministry of Commerce announced plans to implement anti-dumping duties ranging from 23.1 per cent to 75.5 per cent on synthetic halogenated butyl rubber from the United States, the European Union and Singapore starting 20 August 2018.
An agreement was signed today for the sale of Lanxess’ 50 per cent share in the Arlanxeo joint venture to its partner, Saudi Aramco. Should antitrust authorities approve the transaction, Lanxess will receive approximately 1.4 billion euros in cash after deducting debt and other financial liabilities for its 50 per cent share in the business, which is valued at 3.0 billion euros. Lanxess, which at the end of June 2018 had a net financial debt of 2.6 billion euros, says it plans to use the proceeds to strengthen its financial basis and reduce net financial debt.
Five years of joint research has led to a breakthrough in the production of synthetic rubber. Yokohama Rubber says it has developed the world’s first technology for efficiently producing isoprene from a biomass, and by doing so reduces dependence on petroleum.
The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company plans to test tyre components in space as part of a project in the International Space Station (ISS) U.S. National Laboratory, through an experiment expected to launch later this year. Specifically, it will study the formation of silica particles in the satellite’s microgravity environment. By gathering knowledge from this evaluation, Goodyear engineers and scientists can determine if further investigation of unique forms of precipitated silica should be considered in tyres.