Braskem adding UHMWPE capacity in Texas

By Frank Esposito
Senior Staff Reporter

Published: June 27, 2014 12:36 pm ET
Updated: June 27, 2014 12:41 pm ET

Image By: Braskem SA Braskem SA will add UMHWPE capacity at La Porte, Texas, where it already has 860 million pounds of polypropylene capacity.

Related to this story

Topics Materials, United States, Materials Suppliers

Brazilian plastics giant Braskem SA will spend $34 million to build a plant making ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) at its site in La Porte, Texas.

Construction on the plant will begin in the third quarter of 2014, with completion expected in the first half of 2016. São Paulo-based Braskem currently only makes UHMWPE in Brazil. The firm sells the material under the UTEC brand name.

“We believe our investment reinforces Braskem’s dedication to the plastics industry and to our strategic markets and clients,” Braskem America CEO Fernando Musa said in a June 27 news release.

He added that the new plant “is the next logical step for our UTEC business, as we have been providing UTEC to clients in the United States and Europe for over 10 years.”

UTEC-brand UHMWPE offers high abrasion resistance and impact strength, Braskem officials said. The material is eight times lighter than steel and lasts 10 times longer than high density PE, they added. Industries that use UTEC include construction, agriculture and automotive.

The new plant will create an unspecified number of new jobs and also will make use of the 100-member work force Braskem already has in La Porte, a company spokeswoman said. An annual production capacity number for the new plant was unavailable.

Braskem already operates about 860 million pounds of annual polypropylene resin capacity in La Porte. The firm ranks as North America’s largest PP maker, with a total of five plants in Texas, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

The announcement adds to a busy growth schedule for Braskem. In October, the firm confirmed it was adding about 260 million pounds of annual linear low density PE production capacity in Brazil. That same month, Braskem announced the formation of an ABS joint venture with Styrolution GmbH and the building of a new plant making ABS and related resins in Brazil.

Braskem also is majority partner in the Ethylene XXI joint venture which is expected to open a major complex making PE and ethylene feedstock in Coatzacolacos, Mexico, in July 2015. Grupo Idea SA de CV of Mexico City is Braskem’s partner in the project.


Comments

Braskem adding UHMWPE capacity in Texas

By Frank Esposito
Senior Staff Reporter

Published: June 27, 2014 12:36 pm ET
Updated: June 27, 2014 12:41 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Non-recyclable items gumming up the works at recycling centers

August 21, 2014 3:46 pm ET

The influx of all sorts of unacceptable items at recycling centers has gotten to the point that Charlotte, N.C.-based ReCommunity is trying to bring...    More

Image

NanoHolding, Applied Nanotech merge to form PEN Inc.

August 21, 2014 4:44 pm ET

Nanotechnology firms NanoHolding Inc. and Applied Nanotech Holdings Inc. are merging to create PEN Inc., a publicly held firm whose product mix will...    More

Image

Investment firm specializes in emerging polymer firms in Ohio

August 21, 2014 3:20 pm ET

A plastics market veteran is working with an investment firm and a research foundation to help commercialize polymer technology in the Buckeye State.    More

Image

Bayer, SCAC partner on water reuse project

August 21, 2014 12:48 pm ET

Bayer MaterialScience (BMS) and Shanghai Chlor-Alkali Chemical Co. Ltd. (SCAC) have entered into a preliminary agreement for the reuse of waste water ...    More

Image

Report predicts growth for flexible packaging

August 21, 2014 12:34 pm ET

Flexible packaging in the United States grew last year and is expected to continue to grow this year, according to a new report by the Flexible Packag...    More

Market Reports

Thermoformed Packaging 2014 Market Review & Outlook North America

This in-depth report analyzes economic and market trends, legislative/regulatory activity impacting supply and demand, business opportunities and threats, materials pricing, manufacturing technology, as well as growth strategies being implemented by thermoformed packaging companies.

Learn more

Pipe, Profile & Tubing Extrusion in North America 2014

U.S. demand for extruded plastics is expected to grow by 3 percent in 2014, with PVC remaining the largest segment.

Plastic pipe will post the strongest gains through 2018, continuing to take market share from competing materials in a range of markets.

Our latest market report provides in-depth analysis of current trends and their financial impact on the pipe, profile and tubing extrusion industry in North America.

Learn more

2014 Injection Molding Industry Report

GROWTH, OPPORTUNITY IN SIGHT FOR INJECTION MOLDERS IN 2014

In the wake of the economic turbulence earlier in this decade, molders today find themselves in much better shape. Molders are gaining a competitive advantage by investing in people, equipment and seeking inroads into new markets on a global scale.

Growth in the injection molding industry is going to be driven by low financing costs and a continued move to reshore some business.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

More Events