Reaction & Synthesis

Clariant, Wuxi Xiyuan Collaborate On Formaldehyde Production In China

By Chemical Processing Staff

May 15, 2019

Specialty chemical company Clariant is collaborating with its engineering partner Wuxi Xiyuan on two new projects to supply their joint formaldehyde production technology. The new contracts, awarded by Shandong Yushiju Chemical and Shandong Sunny Wealth New Materials, will grow the number of customers using the partners’ advanced technology to six.

The technology, based on Clariant’s Famax 200 DS catalyst, was recently installed by Wuxi Xiyuan in three formaldehyde plants in China and India. The fourth plant to use the technology will be located in the Jiangsu province of China. It is expected to commence operations in the second quarter of 2019 with a planned annual capacity of 240 kilotons of formaldehyde. The new customers, Shandong Yushiju Chemical, one of the largest Chinese producers of phenol formaldehyde resins, and Shandong Sunny Wealth New Materials, a leading antioxidant producer in China, will also start operating in 2019. The producers’ annual formaldehyde capacity is expected to be 150 and 130 kilotons, respectively.

Clariant’s Famax 200 DS is a formaldehyde catalyst that reportedly allows producers to achieve higher productivity and profitability. The catalyst’s hollow, cylindrical shape reduces pressure drop over the catalyst bed by 10-15% compared to conventional catalysts, according to Clariant. This special design gives producers the flexibility to reduce energy consumption when operating at the same plant capacity, or to increase production capacity at the same energy costs.

The iron-molybdenum catalyst also features an advanced chemical composition that improves low temperature activity and allows operation at reduced cooling medium temperatures. These characteristics, combined with higher reaction selectivity, further increase formaldehyde yields, according to Clariant. Thanks to the catalyst’s ability to drastically reduce by-product formation, producers also benefit from higher formaldehyde quality.

Wuxi Xiyuan is a leader in formaldehyde production technologies for direct oxidation of methanol via fixed-bed catalytic reactors in China. The company’s latest strategy focuses on iron-molybdenum catalytic solutions for formaldehyde production. After many years of collaboration, Clariant and Wuxi Xiyuan entered a strategic partnership in 2017 to advance formaldehyde production in China.

For more information, visit: www.clariant.com