Croda Builds U.S. Surfactant Plant


Specialty chemical manufacturer Croda International Plc. is beginning construction of a plant that will produce non-ionic surfactants at its manufacturing facility in New Castle, Del.

The Snaith, United Kingdom-based company, which makes chemicals mostly from plant and animal ingredients, said it is undertaking the $170 million project because of growing interest in both renewable materials and products that improve fuel efficiency.

The demand for the products that could utilize this technology is on the increase due to market drivers of improved fuel economy and sustainability, both of which are at the heart of Crodas innovation focus for lubricants, Croda Director of Sales and Marketing Christopher Donaghy told Lube Report.

Croda held a groundbreaking ceremony for the project last week but is still working to finalize necessary government permits. Once the permitting process is complete, the company said it plans to build the addition to the New Castle facility, referred to as Atlas Point, over the next two years.

The chemicals made by the new plant are expected to be used in a variety of applications in lubricants.

This technology may be utilized as a key building block in many of Crodas lubricant product offerings in addition to surfactants, Donaghy said. Examples of Crodas product offerings in these areas would include synthetic base oils, friction modifiers and corrosion inhibitors as well as surfactants.

Applications outside of lubes include seat foams and coatings in the automobile industry; air- and floor-care products in the cleaning industry; and drilling fluid in the oil industry.

Croda has more than 3,500 employees across more than 10 manufacturing sites and offices in over 30 countries. Its products are used as ingredients in several industries, including personal care, home care, industrial chemicals, polymer additives, coatings and polymers and lubricants.

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