Dow to Unveil New Natural Oil Polyol Technology at Polyurethanes Conference

Dow Polyurethanes (PU), a business group of The Dow Chemical Company, will unveil its new natural oil polyol technology and its newly expanded systems capabilities at the 50th Annual Polyurethanes Technical Conference and UTECH Expo, held September 24-26, 2007 in Orlando, Florida. Dow executives will also discuss the changing global landscape and its impact on the future of the polyurethanes industry.

Dow Polyurethanes will greet customers and other conference delegates at their hospitality suite, located in the Destin room at the Gaylord Palms Resort and Convention Center. In addition, Dow Hyperlast*, a U.K.-based polyurethane systems business acquired by Dow Polyurethanes from British Vita in May of this year, will welcome visitors at Booth # 216 at the UTECH North America exhibition. Dow will also capitalize on the knowledge-sharing opportunities of the conference by presenting 15 technical papers on topics including renewable feedstocks, recycling, and recent advances in viscoelastic foams. A complete list of Dow's technical papers is available at the Center for Polyurethanes Industries (CPI) 2007 Web site http://www.polyurethane.org/s_api/index.asp.

On Tuesday morning, September 25, Dow will reveal the name of its new natural oil polyol technology at a breakfast seminar for customers. During the seminar, customers will learn how this sophisticated technology uses natural vegetable oils, such as soybean oil, to create polyols with high levels of renewable content that can be used in a wide variety of polyurethane applications. Dow's natural oil polyol technology delivers the processing and performance customers expect from Dow, without the odor typically associated with soy products. According to life-cycle analysis conducted by Dow researchers, Dow's natural oil polyol technology is greenhouse-gas neutral and uses up to 60% less fossil fuel resources than the manufacturing of conventional polyols. Conference attendees who are interested in attending Dow's breakfast seminar on its new natural oil polyol technology can contact Umberto Torresan at [email protected] For more information please visit www.downaturalpolyols.com.

Doug Warner, business director for Dow Polyols, a business unit of Dow Polyurethanes, who will deliver the opening remarks at the event as chairman of the CPI event states, "the PU industry is attuned to the ever-changing needs of the market. In order to meet these needs, the industry continually expands its product offerings and develops new technologies. Today's polyurethane products meet sophisticated application requirements and help our customers achieve regulatory compliance. New advanced technologies redefine the industry itself and provide customers with alternative product offerings.

"Dow Polyurethanes is committed to the development of economical, technologically-advanced processes and products that support Dow's sustainable chemistry goals, as evidenced by the investment in hydrogen-peroxide-based propylene oxide low VOC (volatile organic compounds) VORACTIVT polyols, and most recently, our natural oil polyol technology," Warner says.

"Dow's breakthrough, multi-step natural oil polyol technology can produce high-performance, bio-based polyols that can be used to make foams with a high level of renewable content. Delivering quality to our customer and appealing to consumer's growing "green" awareness, technological advances such as this reinvigorate demand and help keep the industry strong."

Juan Antonio Merino, general manager for Dow Polyurethane Systems, a business unit within Dow Polyurethanes, sums up the business's strategy as "a disciplined quest to provide the broadest range of custom-tailored products and application technologies across the widest geographic reach." In the past few years, Dow Polyurethanes has complemented its capabilities and expanded its market presence through several strategic acquisitions and joint ventures. Two recent transactions include the purchase of the U.K.-based Hyperlast polyurethane systems business from British Vita in May of this year, and a joint venture with Izolan, based in Russia, in August 2006.

"Our blueprint for growth is research and innovation both inside and outside of Dow," Merino says. "As a market leader, Dow PU Systems has a goal of being the most comprehensive problem solver for our customers, regardless of their geographic location or the industry they serve."

To enhance the value it offers to customers and to support reliability of supply in the face of growing demand for polyurethanes and polyurethane systems worldwide, Dow is continually investing in its Performance businesses like Dow Polyurethanes. Within the last year, Dow Polyurethanes has announced significant capital investment plans to expand capacity at its plants in the U.S. and Europe. In Asia, Dow recently announced investments in Thailand with the formation of a JV with Solvay S.A. to build a hydrogen peroxide (HP) plant. In addition, Dow Polyurethanes is currently engaged in advanced negotiations with BASF for the construction of a world-scale propylene oxide manufacturing facility in Map Ta Phut, Thailand, which would use the innovative hydrogen peroxide-to-propylene oxide (HPPO) technology developed jointly by Dow and BASF.

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