Polyurethane

Polyurethane (PU) plastics have become an indispensable part of today's everyday life and are used in a wide range of applications. PU as rigid foam insulates facades and refrigerators, whereas soft and elastic PU ensures a comfortable seat in furniture upholstery or the pleasant grip of the steering wheel in a car - just to name a few. To meet the constantly growing global demand, effective and economical production processes and high-quality precursors of polyurethanes are needed. Efficient process catalysts play a crucial role in producing polyols and polyisocyanates and are thus an essential lever.

Our extensive catalysis expertise has led to our comprehensive portfolio of high-performance catalysts based on precious metals or base metals to produce polyurethane (PU) precursors.

We produce catalysts in all industrially required scales and ensure that their performance remains undiminished in 24/7 continuously operated large-scale plants. Our catalysts are characterized by consistently high activity, selectivity, and batch-to-batch reliably high quality.

We are your flexible and expert global partner when it comes to catalysts for the production of PU precursors. Depending on the reaction type and conditions, our experienced application engineering team will find the right catalyst for your process and provide specific technical support, from in-house application testing to elucidation of the deactivation mechanism and specific application questions.

For special challenges, our customized solutions can deliver the most suitable, cost-effective and resource-efficient catalysts.

Aniline is mainly produced from nitrobenzene by catalytic hydrogenation in slurry-type continuous reactors. Besides many low to medium scale applications in the manufacturing of specialty chemicals, e.g., dyes and pigments, the majority of aniline is converted into methylenediisocyanate (MDI), a monomer used in particular in production of rigid polyurethane foams. Despite aniline being a multi-million ton per annum bulk chemical, the purity requirements are very high and call for highly selective catalysts. We offer Noblyst® P8000-type precious metal powder high-performance hydrogenation catalysts that provide selectivity of >99 %. For fixed-bed processes, Metalyst® MC 9** provides a unique foam structure showing very high activity, lightweight, and mechanical strength combined with a significantly lower pressure drop over the catalyst bed.

Your benefits at a glance:

  • Very low catalyst consumption and therefore an excellent product/catalyst ratio
  • Fewer by-products through selectivity over 99 %

Propylene oxide (PO) is required in the production of polyether polyols, propylene glycols and 1,4-butanediol. Its main application is a central precursor product for polyurethane systems, which are used to manufacture insulation, furniture and industrial foams, coatings, solvents, and many more.

Please find more information here 

An intermediate product in the polyurethane production process is toluenediamine (TDA), which is produced from the hydrogenation of dinitrotoluene (DNT) and then processed into toluene diisocyanate (TDI). TDI is a key precursor of flexible polyurethane (PU) foams and other PU products.

We offer a range of precious metal powder catalysts on carbon support ranging from monometallic type Noblyst® P1000 to bi- and multimetallic Noblyst® P8000 catalysts. Those catalysts demonstrate high activity and high selectivity and guarantee a consistent and highly reproducible performance over many years of supply. Along with the fresh catalyst we offer precious metal services for the recovery of the used catalyst.

We also offer activated base metal catalysts from our Metalyst® MC range designed for large-scale DNT hydrogenation systems using more than 10 bar hydrogen and temperatures ranging from 120 °C to 150 °C. These are specifically designed to avoid the formation of takovite while delivering high activity and outstanding TDA selectivity. The buildup of the mineral takovite can lead to a shorter catalyst life, separation issues, and safety problems if not properly controlled.

Your benefits at a glance:

  • High yield and reduced tar formation through high activity and selectivity
  • Efficient use thanks to recyclable catalysts, low catalyst cost per ton of products
  • Takovite avoidance during DNT hydrogenation and therefore a longer catalyst life (Metalyst® MC 507)
  • Easy catalyst separation in continuous STR due to optimized sedimentation properties (Metalyst® MC 507)

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