BASF has started up a new plant for the production of low-molecular-weight, highly reactive polyisobutene (HR PIB) at its site in Ludwigshafen, Germany, thus increasing its annual capacity by 25,000 metric tons to 40,000 metric tons. The polymer, marketed worldwide under the Glissopal® trademark, is an important intermediate product for the manufacture of additives for fuels and lubricants.
The present increase in capacity is the second significant one within the last two years. In April 2008 BASF increased its annual capacity for Glissopal® at its site in Antwerp, Belgium by 25,000 metric tons to 100,000 metric tons.
“In taking this step, we are strengthening our polyisobutene production here at Ludwigshafen. It also shows once again the benefits of our Verbund production network. Integration in the Verbund reduces the number of shipments between different sites, and hence the amount of traffic on our roads”, says Hans W. Reiners, head of BASF’s Performance Chemicals division.
Ralf Spettmann, head of the Automotive and Refinery Chemicals business unit adds: “With this investment, we are adapting our capacity sustainably to the steadily increasing demand and continue to be a reliable partner for our customers.”
BASF produces polyisobutene in four plants at its sites in Ludwigshafen, Germany and Antwerp, Belgium and manufactures low- molecular-weight polyisobutene (Glissopal®) as well as medium- and high-molecular-weight polyisobutene (Oppanol®). All three ranges of products play an important role in a wide variety of applications and include intermediates for fuel and lubricant additives, industrial lubricants and oils, adhesives, sealants and chewing gum.