News from Notch Consulting, Inc.

June 4, 2019

UK car production plummets in April as Brexit shutdowns strike

Filed under: Auto — Notch @ 11:27 am

UK car manufacturing output fell by almost 50 percent in April, for the 11th consecutive month of decline in automotive production.

Just under 71,000 cars rolled off the line in the month, down -44.5% year on year, attributed to large-scale factory shutdowns, which normally are scheduled for the summer holiday but were brought forward and extended due to Brexit.

“[These] figures are evidence of the vast cost and upheaval Brexit uncertainty has already wrought on UK automotive manufacturing businesses and workers,” SMMT Chief Executive Mike Hawes said.

The UK was expected to withdraw from the European Union 29 Mar, but the departure date has now been extended to October 31.

Referenced article found here.

May 14, 2019

Pyrolyx plans to add second U.S. recovered carbon black plant

Filed under: Carbon Black, Tire Recycling — Notch @ 9:30 am

Recovered carbon black producer Pyrolyx A.G. is progressing with plans for a second plant in the U.S., to be built adjacent to one under construction in Terre Haute, Indiana. Pyrolyx is also in the process of moving its headquarters from Munich to Terre Haute. Construction on the plant is expected to start in the third quarter.

The plant under construction has a rated annual capacity of nearly 13,000 metric tons of recovered carbon black, which translates to about 4 million tires recycled a year.

The company has raised $2.3 million from the sale of equity capital in Pyrolyx A.G. and has access to a $4.5 million loan facility from Pyrolyx USA Inc. for funding.

Pyrolyx recently disclosed a non-binding five-year agreement to supply up to 15,000 tons of rCB a year to tire maker Continental A.G. from its plants in Stegelitz, Germany, and Terre Haute.

Here’s the press release.

Black Bear and MMEC join forces

Filed under: Carbon Black, Tire Recycling — Notch @ 9:05 am

Clean tech company Black Bear has entered into a strategic partnership with engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) firm MMEC Mannesmann (MMEC) to accelerate the roll-out of its breakthrough technology to produce recovered Carbon Black (rCB) from end-of-life tires.

“To meet the growing demand for rCB and receive a substantial impact to meet the waste tire problem, we need to roll-out our proven technology,” explained Joost Raimond, Construction Director at Black Bear.

“Being in the EPC industry for many years, I know that the partnership with MMEC is a game-changer in our time-to-market as we now can offer real turn-key plant realization to clients who want to use our technology.”

The rCB is Cradle-to-CradleTM certified and is already used by major clients, including AkzoNobel.

The initial focus will be on already identified sites together with partners inside Europe. Given MMEC’s strong presence in the Middle East, this region will also see Black Bear facilities emerging in the future.

Read the full press release here.

Orion launches highest-jet carbon black at Eastern Coatings Show

Filed under: Carbon Black — Notch @ 6:25 am

Orion Engineered Carbons will launch COLOUR BLACK FW 310, the highest-jet carbon black available, at the Eastern Coatings Show 2019, which takes place May 14-15 in Atlantic City, N.J.

Available now for commercial use, COLOUR BLACK FW 310, a post-treated furnace black, is an excellent choice for automotive OEM basecoats, refinish coatings, as well as high-end industrial applications.

“COLOUR BLACK FW 310 is the most jet carbon black available today from any manufacturer, so it is breaking new ground,” said Jennifer Stroh, Ph.D., marketing manager, coatings, Americas. “It is going to help designers reach a new level of black that hasn’t been attainable before.

“The after-treatment makes COLOUR BLACK FW 310 a universal grade,” Dr. Stroh continued. “It is suitable for both water- and solvent-borne coatings, enabling coatings producers to purchase a single grade for both systems. In fact, it works well in applications, such as automotive OEM and refinish, that require different solvents.”

Orion’s testing in a waterborne one-component polyurethane system and a solvent-borne two-component polyurethane system shows COLOUR BLACK FW 310 has higher jetness (MY) values than the company’s previous premium product, COLOUR BLACK FW 255, which is roughly comparable to competitive premium carbon blacks. In systems tested, the jetness increased approximately 10 (MY) points depending on formulation. Equally important is it imparts the same bluish undertone, about 11.0 dM, as the previous leading high-jet grades.

April 20, 2019

Evonik develops silica technology that could lower truck rolling resistance

Filed under: Silica, Tires — Notch @ 11:44 am

Evonik Industries A.G. announced that it has developed a silica/silane technology that can be used in natural rubber compounds to reduce the rolling resistance in medium truck and bus tires.

Evonik said that it conducted tests which proved that the use of its proprietary silica/silane technology could help improve fuel economy by as much as 8 percent when compared to traditional carbon-black reinforced NR compounds. Its use also helped reduce braking distances, thus making it safer to drive on on wet or snow-covered roads.

Jens Kiesewetter, Evonik’s head of technical service for rubber silica, said that when silica/silane technology is used in green tires for buses and trucks with high fuel consumption levels, it can make a significant contribution to climate protection, especially in light of the recent EU agreement on targets for CO2 reduction for trucks.

Evonik also announced that it is well on track to expand tire silica capacity at a plant in Adapazari, Turkey, including adding capacity for the Ultrasil 9100 GR precipitated silica reinforcing filler and Ultrasil 5000 GR, for optimizing wet and winter properties of tires.

Read the full press release here.

April 16, 2019

BKT Tires Inaugurates New European Headquarters

Filed under: Tires — Notch @ 10:44 am

Inaugurated on April 5th, BKT’s new European headquarters in Seregno at the outskirts of Milan has been completely renovated to convey the company’s goal of achieving the “Next Level.”

“Creating our new headquarters is more than just an architectural project. For us, it also has an underlying strategic meaning,” explains Lucia Salmaso, CEO of BKT Europe. “We are constantly striving to increase our presence and market share in Europe and, above all, to get closer to our European OEM customers. Our goal is to permanently strengthen the presence of the BKT brand with Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM), and we know how to achieve it. We have already opened many doors with our Aftermarket references and continue forging ahead with new opportunities. Our new headquarters has a key role in this regard.

The European market has proven to be essential for the company, representing 50% of BKT’s turnover, which surpassed $900 million at a global level last year.

Referenced article found here.

Pyrolyx working to secure 5-year supply deal with Continental

Filed under: Carbon Black — Notch @ 9:20 am

Recovered carbon black producer Pyrolyx A.G. has signed a non-binding letter of intent with Continental A.G. to set up a supply agreement for its recycled product.

The value of the contract, which calls for the supply of up to 15,000 metric tons per year of Pyrolyx’s rCB over five years to Conti, was not disclosed. Conti did not comment independently on Pyrolyx’s news release.

Pyrolyx’s USA CEO, Thomas Redd, said: “This LOI is an extremely positive development for Pyrolyx and validates Pyrolyx’s process and products. Pyrolyx is a world leader in assisting the carbon black industry to decrease its environmental footprint and this agreement, once implemented, will eliminate the need to burn or dump four million scrap tires annually and reduce CO2 emissions by over 32,000 tons annually, as compared to current carbon black manufacturing techniques.”

Read the full press release here.

Munich-based Pyrolyx A.G. is in the process of moving its headquarters to the U.S., into facilities under construction in Terre Haute, Indiana.

Nexen to begin trial production at Czech tire plant

Filed under: Tires — Tags: — Notch @ 8:49 am

Nexen Tire Europe is ready to begin trial production at its $1 billion greenfield tire plant in Zatec in northeastern Czech Republic, pending permission from “appropriate authorities.”

Nexen broke ground on the project in October 2015. Start-up of the first phase of the factory, producing roughly 15,000 units a day, was scheduled for 2018. Nexen plans to increase the plant’s production capacity gradually to over 12 million units a year.

Zatec is Nexen’s second tire plant outside Korea; the other is in Qingdao, China.

Reference article found here.

April 9, 2019

Linglong tire factory begins construction in Serbia

Filed under: Tires — Tags: — Notch @ 12:59 pm

China’s Shandong Linglong Tire Co. Ltd. has laid a ceremonial corner stone for its greenfield tire factory project in Zrenjanin, signaling the start of construction for the $994 million project in northern Serbia.

“Linglong’s arrival in Serbia is a great opportunity given by the openness and win-win of times. We will live up to our expectations, ensure the rapid and high-quality construction of the project, strive for early production, and at the same time, Linglong will strengthen cultural exchanges and integration with Serbia, aiming to contribute to the establishment of a healthy, stable and sustainable economic and trade cooperation between China and Serbia,” said Wang Feng, Chairman and CEO of Linglong Tire.

Construction will be in three phases over six years and will span 4.24 million square feet, Linglong said.

Operated by Linglong International Europe d.oo. Zrenjanin, the plant is rated at 13.6 million tires per year, comprising 12 million car tires, 1.6 million truck/bus tires, and 20,000 off-the-road tires.

Press release found here.

Sumitomo Rubber truck and bus tire production begins in Brazil

Filed under: Tires — Notch @ 8:52 am

Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd.’s Brazilian subsidiary has initiated production of radial truck and bus tires at its plant in Fazenda, Brazil following a $133 million, three-year expansion project.

SRI opened the 5.38-million-sq.-ft. plant in Brazil’s Parana State, southwest of Sao Paulo, in late 2013 after an investment of $345 million. Adding capacity for truck tires necessitated a physical expansion of the plant by about 144,000 square feet, SRI said.

Read the full press release here.

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