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Bayer MaterialScience can begin construction in Dormagen of a new world-scale plant for a key plastics precursor.
According to Bayer, the Cologne regional administration has now granted the permit for an early start to construction, clearing the way for the extensive construction work to begin promptly. The final operating permit is expected in the spring. Plans call for the construction of a EUR 150 million high-tech plant in Dormagen for the particularly ecological production of the chemical TDI (toluene diisocyanate), which is required for flexible polyurethane foam.
“We are pleased that the construction for this important project can now begin and be completed within the next two years as planned,” says Dr. Joachim Wolff, Head of the Polyurethanes Business and member of the Executive Committee of Bayer MaterialScience. “With an annual capacity of 300,000 metric tons, the future world-scale plant is the final building block of a long-term investment strategy in Dormagen in addition to being a key element for optimising our isocyanate production in Europe.” In the medium term, it is expected to replace the existing plants for the production of TDI in Dormagen and Brunsbüttel. Bayer expects demand for this precursor for flexible polyurethane foams to continue to grow.
Bayer says that an innovative process makes production in Dormagen particularly efficient and climate-friendly. Compared with a conventional plant of the same size, the new facility will reduce energy consumption by up to 60 percent while requiring as much as 80 percent less solvent.
They explain that it also satisfies the most stringent of safety requirements. Safety measures include a continuously monitored, earthquake and stormproof housing. In theory, a variety of materials can be used for such a shell. Bayer say they chose a metallic housing fastened to a stable steel base structure. In the unlikely event of a materials leak, this in combination with a robust ventilation system ensures that none of these substances escape the housing, thus protecting people and the environment. Bayer has based the design of this housing on a mature, globally recognised industry standard in full consideration of the technical parameters of this production process.
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