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Business Roundup

August 6, 2012 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 90, Issue 32

Air Products & Chemicals plans to build a second heat exchanger manufacturing facility to satisfy burgeoning global demand for liquefied natural gas. To be located in Manatee County, Fla., the facility will open in 2013 and ultimately employ 250 people. The firm now builds heat exchangers in Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

Clariant has acquired the remaining 40% in Süd-Chemie Alvigo Catalysts, a joint venture that manufactures syngas catalysts in Ukraine. The venture was between Süd-Chemie, acquired by Clariant last year, and the Ukrainian holding company Alvigo.

Siluria, a San Fran­cisco-based firm developing catalytic technology for making ethylene from methane, has raised $30 million in a venture capital round led by Bright Capital and Vulcan Capital. In total, Siluria has raised $63.3 million.

PolyOne will work with the University of Dayton, GE Aviation, Rapid Prototype & Manufacturing, and Stratasys to develop materials that can be processed into auto and aerospace parts through 3-D printing technology. The three-year project received a $3 million grant from the Ohio Third Frontier initiative.

Solvay’s Rhodia unit and the biobased chemicals firm Cobalt Technologies are advancing plans for an n-butyl alcohol facility in Brazil that uses bagasse, a by-product of sugar refining, as its raw material. The companies say they will begin testing a demonstration plant at a sugar mill by the middle of next year.

Cooper Tire & Rubber will receive a $6.9 million biomass R&D grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to optimize the quantity and quality of natural rubber from the guayule shrub, a hardwood perennial grown in the southeastern U.S. The project will use genomic sequencing and molecular markers.

Bristol-Myers Squibb informed close to 100 employees in its R&D group on Aug. 1 that their positions are being eliminated. The company attributes the cuts, in an R&D organization of more than 7,000 employees, to the evolution of its research focus.

Xoma has sold its Berkeley, Calif., biologic drugs production facility to the contract manufacturing organization CMC Biologics. The Berkeley site houses three 2,750-L bioreactors and two purification suites, as well as warehouse and office space.

Eisai will move its KAN Research Institute into Japan’s Kobe Biomedical Innovation Cluster, where the institute will have five times the floor space. Eisai foresees doubling KAN’s headcount to 100 researchers. KAN focuses on cell biology for refractory immune diseases, neurodegenerative diseases, and cancer relapse and metastasis.



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