BASF, a manufacturer and global supplier of chemical solutions, has expanded the production capacity of PolyTHF, the chemical intermediate also known as polytetramethylene ether glycol, to 250,000 metric tons per annum from 185,000 metric tons.
BASF has been in continued capacity expansion mode and has spent more than 60 million euros towards the development efforts which also include modernization of its plants to improve efficiency and sourcing adequate raw materials for PolyTHF production.
The first PolyTHF manufacturing facility of BASF was established in 1983 at the Verbund site in Ludwigshafen. From there, BASF has grown to be the sole global provider of PolyTHF by establishing four other manufacturing facilities at the Geismar site in Louisiana, United States, Ulsan in Korea, Ludwigshafen in Germany and Caojing in China.
Sanjeev Gandhi, President of the Intermediate Division at BASF, stated that the PolyTHF capacity expansion was aligned with rising customer demand and that the Asia-Pacific region is the major PolyTHF market in the world owing to customer growth rate and revenue generated by BASF in that region.
PolyTHF is mainly employed in textiles industry to produce elastic spandex fibers that make up swimsuits, sportswear, outerwear and underwear. PolyTHF also functions as the chemical constituents of thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPU), which are used in the manufacture of films, hoses and cable sheathing. Other applications of PolyTHF comprises cast elastomers, polyetheramides and polyetheresters used in the manufacture of skateboard wheels.