Prague – Czech petrochemicals company Orlen Unipetrol is investing more than CZK800 million (€30 million) in the installation of a new unit to produce dicyclopentadiene (DCPC) plasticiser resin.
The plant, the location of which was not disclosed, will have a production capacity of 26 kilotonnes per annum (ktpa) and its products will be launched on the market in the second half of 2022, said Unipetrol in a 15 March statement.
DCPC is a highly reactive thermoplastic resing, which can be used as a monomer for EPDM rubber production, among many other applications.
“There has been a high demand for this product on global markets. Europe is currently seeing a deficit in DCPD production capacities,” said Tomasz Wiatrak, chairman of the board of directors of the Orlen Unipetrol Group.
The company said it expected demand for DCPC to grow by another 20% by 2030 in Europe, driven by the automotive, construction, electrical and healthcare industries.
In view of the high demand, Unipetrol said it has developed its own technology in collaboration with the Czech University of Chemistry and Technology.
“The project aimed to find a method of isolating hydrocarbons that are secondary products in the petrochemistry units, have a higher added value and can find an application in the market. DCPD is one of the examples,” said Tomáš Herink, a member of the board of directors responsible for production, research and development.
“We designed a suitable production method and prepared a technology for DCPD’s isolation with a broad range of commercial quality. The installed capacity will be about 25 per cent of the total production in Europe,” he added.