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Business

LyondellBasell plant to debut polymer process

by Alexander H. Tullo
August 8, 2016 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 94, ISSUE 32

LyondellBasell Industries is moving forward with plans to build a high-density polyethylene (HDPE) plant on the U.S. Gulf Coast. The plant will have 500,000 metric tons of annual capacity when it opens in 2019 and be the first to use the company’s new Hyperzone technology. The process uses a two-stage, gas-phase reactor that constructs a multimodal resin. The first stage, explains Dan Coombs, Lyondell’s executive vice president of global olefins and polyolefins technology, imparts processability by giving the polymer an optimal molecular weight. The second stage’s multizone reactor controls reaction conditions and the addition of comonomers. The company says Hyperzone technology offers improved stress crack resistance as well as a better balance between stiffness and impact strength than conventional HDPE. Target markets include pipe and blow-molded objects such as laundry detergent bottles. The company ultimately aims to license the technology.

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