Materials maker Invista plans to double nylon 6/6 resin production capacity in China in a $230 million project.
Capacity at the plant in Shanghai was increased by about 90 million pounds last year, bringing the site's total to about 450 million pounds. The new expansion will lift that total to almost 900 million pounds.
In a news release, officials with Invista in Wichita, Kan., said the new capacity will allow the firm to more quickly respond to growing demand for engineering plastics in automotive, electrical and electronics, and other applications.
The new capacity would help alleviate a tight global market for nylon 6/6, which has been in place since 2017.
"The need for nylon 6/6 polymer rose drastically in recent years," Invista officials said. They added that estimated compound annual growth for nylon 6/6 through 2029 is about 2 percent globally and 4 percent in China.
"We anticipate China's demand for nylon products will account for more than half of the total production and consumption of nylon in the Asia-Pacific region and is expected to become the world's largest nylon consumer," officials said.
The new production unit will be at the Shanghai Chemical Industry Park. It will be equipped with six batch autoclaves and three continuous polymerization lines. Materials made on the new lines will have stronger mechanical properties, higher temperature resistance and higher heat resistance, officials said.
"The growing nylon 6/6 polymer demand in China and the Asia Pacific region has encouraged us to continue our investments over the past years," nylon Executive Vice President Pete Brown said.
Asia Intermediates Director Angela Dou added that with the expanded capacity, Invista "hopes to co-develop innovative solutions and applications with our customers and partners across the industries."
Construction of the new unit is set to begin in the second quarter of 2022, with operation in the first quarter of 2024.
In June 2020, Invista broke ground on a major new plant making nylon 6/6 feedstock adiponitrile (ADN) in Shanghai. The firm will spend more than $1 billion on that project, which will have annual production capacity of almost 900 million pounds of ADN.