Evonik Industries and Dow have started up a hydrogen peroxide-to-propylene glycol pilot plant at Evonik’s site in Hanau, Germany. The plant makes propylene glycol directly from propylene and hydrogen peroxide. The conventional route to propylene glycol starts with propylene oxide synthesis. Dow makes propylene oxide via a route it developed with Solvay that also reacts hydrogen peroxide and propylene. The propylene oxide is then converted into propylene glycol via hydrolysis. Dow says that the new process potentially has lower investment costs than the conventional route.