Mill Hall Gets a Makeover


Croda International is expanding capacity and upgrading equipment at its specialty esters manufacturing facility in Mill Hall, Pa.

While it is still operational, the facility is making ongoing improvements to existing process equipment (and installing new ones) that manufacture dibasic and polyol esters.

Dibasic and polyol esters are specialty esters which are used as high-performance synthetic additives and base stocks in producing engine oils, driveline lubricants and industrial oils. Croda sells them under the Priolube brand name.

Chris Donaghy, Crodas sales director for lubricants and oilfield chemicals, cited confidentiality to Lube Report about the specific capacity increase at the Mill Hall, divulging only that, Initial focus will be on expanding capacity for dibasic and polyol esters. Further product expansion may result through collaboration with key customers.

The changes at Mill Hall are a result of increasing North American demand for synthetic lubricant esters prompted by a desire for improved fuel economy in automotive uses and increased production efficiency in industrial markets.

Longer drain intervals require more robust products, including synthetic esters for performance, he said. Both fuel economy and sustainability are key areas of focus and development for Croda, so an investment in supporting these areas at our manufacturing facilities worldwide is a natural course of action.

In addition to its Mill Hall plant, Crodas North American operations include ester manufacturing facilities in New Castle, Del., and Paterson, N.J. The East Yorkshire, U.K. based company has multiple sites manufacturing lubricant grade esters in Europe including the U.K., Germany and the Netherlands.

By adding ester manufacturing capabilities in North America, Croda will be able to provide improved service to our customers and minimize the impact of currency fluctuations, Donaghy said. The main benefit is that this demonstrates Crodas commitment to investing in growth markets where our technology meets the developing needs of our customers.

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