UOP LLC, a Honeywell company, has announced plans to invest $20 million to expand its production facility in Mobile, Ala., to produce adsorbents and catalysts. Currently, the plant produces catalysts that help petrochemical producers increase production while reducing energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. The expansion is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of this year.
The investment will expand production of Honeywell's UOP IONSIV Ion Exchange adsorbents, which remove radioactive material from liquid, and are currently being used in Japan in response to last year's nuclear disaster. It will also support production of new adsorbents and catalysts used by petrochemical producers and refiners.
IONSIV Ion Exchanger adsorbents are crystalline materials that can selectively remove radioactive ions from liquids. At Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, they are being used to reduce radioactive cesium to non-detectable levels in the plant's contaminated wastewater after the earthquake and tsunami last year.
The Mobile plant also produces Honeywell UOP ADS-47 Parex adsorbent, the latest generation of the company's Parex adsorbent. The new adsorbent allows petrochemical producers to increase yields of para-xylene by more than 20% over previous technology. Para-xylene is a material used in the production of synthetic fibers such as polyester as well as plastic bottles.
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