BASF foam insulating LNG
pipes in Korea
BASFs specialty foam Basotect is now, for the
first time, being used to insulate pipes in a liquefied natural
gas (LNG) tank terminal in Gwangyang, Korea. The pipe cover
with Basotect provides energy-efficient thermal insulation,
easy handling and flame retardancy. LNG
gas that is temporarily liquefied at very low temperatures,
in order to transport or store it more easily. As the
temperature of LNG
must be kept below 162°C, efficient insulation for
the pipes is necessary.
According to SKI Insulation, the system supplier of the
removable insulation cover, the pipe cover made from Basotect
is more energy-efficient as it is 20% thinner than conventional
Basotect shows a high degree of stability at low
temperatures. In laboratory tests even at temperatures of
around 200°C the material retains its properties. The
high degree of elasticity and the thermal insulation capacity
of the foam remain unaffected, in contrast to conventional foam
insulation, which becomes brittle when exposed to such extreme
cold, said Dr. Peter Wolf, head of Global Business
Management Basotect at BASF.
SKI Insulation discovered that the system material with the
lightweight and flexible BASF foam can be easily removed for
regular inspection of pipe integrity and later reused, unlike
rigid conventional foams that are hard to replace. This
translates into reduced maintenance costs. Additionally,
Basotect is a highly flame-retardant material, another key
consideration for SKI Insulation, as natural
gas burns easily.
Basotect is an open-cell foam and it has a unique range of
properties. The base material makes it flame-retardant; it can
be used at up to 240°C while retaining its properties over
a wide temperature range. Because of its open-cell foam
structure, it is light (9 g/l), sound-absorbing, flexible even
at low temperatures and thermally insulating.
Dow Global Technologies (DGT) has announced the
invention and development of a new,
high-molecular-weight brominated polymeric flame retardant
(PFR). The PFR is expected to be the next-generation
industry-standard flame retardant for use in both
extruded polystyrene (XPS) and expanded polystyrene (EPS)
foam-insulation applications globally. The development of the
new PFR is the result of Dows continuing search for more
sustainable products and, in this case, for a flame retardant
that can replace hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD).
DGT also announced its first license agreement with Chemtura
Corp. This first license agreement makes it possible for Great
Lakes Solutions, a Chemtura business, to produce and sell the
newly developed PFR for use in XPS and EPS foam.
A poll released in April shows that 90% of Americans
believe the nations petroleum refineries and petrochemical manufacturing plants
are among Americas most important or
important industries. NPRA, the National
Petrochemical & Refiners Association, announced results of
the poll conducted by Opinion Research.
A total of 44% of Americans believe the refining and petrochemical sectors are
among the countrys most important industries,
while 46% consider the sector among the countrys
important industries, the poll found. Only 5% of those
surveyed said the refining and petrochemical sectors were not
among the countrys important industries and the
remaining 5% said they did not know.
The board of directors of the Export-Import Bank of
the US has voted to grant preliminary
approval for a $2.84 billion direct loan/loan guarantee to
Colombias Refinería de Cartagena S.A. (Reficar).
The financing, when finally approved, will support the
purchases of equipment and services from over 150 large and
small US engineering/design, equipment supply, contracting and
process license firms, including Chicago Bridge & Iron,
Foster Wheeler, ExxonMobil and UOP. This is part of a $5.18
billion refinery and upgrade project in Cartagena, Colombia,
supplying petroleum products to the domestic and export
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will
require electronic submissions for new chemical
notices under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).
Beginning last month, companies can no longer submit their new
chemical notices and support documents on paper for the
On April 6, 2010, the EPA issued a final rule that put in
place a two-year phaseout of paper and optical-disc reporting
for new chemical notices to the agency. The rule included a
one-year phaseout of paper reporting and a two-year phaseout of
optical-disc reporting. Under TSCA, companies are required to
submit new chemical notices, including pre-manufacture notices
(PMNs), to the EPA at least 90 days (in the case of PMNs) prior
to the manufacture or import of the chemical. The EPA reviews
the notice and can set conditions to be placed on the use of a
new chemical before it enters into commerce.
Marking the one year anniversary of the tragic
accident at the Tesoro refinery in Anacortes, Washington,
the US Chemical Safety Board (CSB) released a video safety
message in which Chairperson Rafael Moure-Eraso urged refinery companies to make the
investments necessary to ensure safe operations.
The video highlighted the CSBs ongoing investigation
into the April 2, 2010, accident that killed seven workers. At
the time of the incident, a heat exchanger was being brought
online when the nearly 40-year-old piece of equipment
catastrophically failed, spewing highly flammable hydrogen and
naphtha that ignited and exploded.
Tesoro disputes the findings of the CSB. Company
spokesperson Mike Marcy said in a statement that, We
disagree with the chairmans characterization of
Tesoros operations at Anacortes. The heat exchanger was
maintained and inspected in accordance with regulations and
industry standards. We continue to cooperate with the