Leverkusen – Synthetic rubber pioneer LANXESS will have home advantage at the German Rubber Conference in Nuernberg from July 2 to 5, 2012. At stand 12-203, covering some 100 square meters, experts from the Leverkusen-based specialty chemicals company will be available to answer questions for customers from all rubber industries. Discussions likely will center on the current makeup of the Keltan product line, a new bromobutyl grade, and of course pending developments in the tire market, which LANXESS specialists believe will lead to increased demand for high-performance tire rubber products. Employees of the LANXESS Technical Rubber Products, Rubber Chemicals, Rhein Chemie and Performance Butadiene Rubbers business units will also be available at the stand and contributing several highly regarded papers to the conference lecture program.
“Rubber is expected to do more and more these days,” says Dr. Werner Breuers, member of the board of management of LANXESS AG. “Trends in many industries therefore are heading in a very exciting direction for us, because most of our portfolio comprises those very high-performance rubber products that help our customers maintain their market position and continuously capture new market shares, despite the rising demands imposed on rubber products.”
A good example is the automotive industry, whose growing demands on high-end rubber will be outlined at the stand in a large-screen presentation of relevant application examples involving LANXESS special-purpose rubber products. On account of rising temperatures under the hood and increasingly dynamic loads, motor vehicles are generating great demand for high-performance HNBR elastomers from the Therban family that additionally are resistant to oils and other media. Furthermore, for the development of new electric cars, LANXESS rubber specialists must also find new answers to familiar questions such as ozone resistance, as they are doing by providing EPDM (Keltan) as an ozone-resistant rubber grade. Special-purpose rubber products face additional demands from increasingly aggressive oil additives and the further spread of alternative fuels, such as bio-ethanol.
“The new LANXESS SSBR rubbers may well elicit a lot of interest in Nuremberg, too, because they can help our customers to engineer tires that save fuel,” Breuers explains. LANXESS currently is working on new, functionalized SSBR grades that bind more efficiently to the important filler silica, thus helping among other things to reduce tire rolling resistance. They are mainly intended for use in combination with high-performance Nd-BR rubbers from LANXESS. “They will attract more attention from customers than before because of the pending tire labeling regulations in Europe,” Breuers points out.
But even outside the automotive and tire industries, Germany’s largest synthetic rubber supplier can earn recognition. The LANXESS Butyl Rubber business unit, for example, is working on a bromobutyl grade that is tailored more closely to the needs of pharmaceutical packaging manufacturers and can be used in stoppers and plunger seals. The new grade supports the manufacture of cleaner rubber formulations, increases productivity in stopper manufacturing and offers improved physical properties. Customers can expect the first samples of this material to be available in the third quarter of 2012.
In a number of technical presentations, LANXESS experts explain the efforts behind these and other developments. Rubber specialists from numerous global LANXESS locations will cover a range of subjects, from current issues in rubber chemistry to quality management. For instance, the complex details of rubber production are addressed in presentations on manufacturing HNBR rubber products with low molecular weights and EPDM vulcanization processes. The state of the art in rubber applications technology is the subject of lectures on new Baypren products, the competition between rubber and thermoplastic elastomers and the flame retardance of EVA and EVM rubbers. Another paper on Keltan ACE technology gives insight into current LANXESS processing technology in EPDM manufacturing. Presentations on the use of Nanoprene additives in winter tires, new nitrile rubbers with self-curing properties and the fundamentals of the interaction between rubber macromolecules and fillers explore this complex subject more from the standpoint of the experienced rubber chemist or physicist. Experts of LANXESS’ Rhein Chemie business unit will focus on tyre tread key property improvements, a new process for final integrated continuous mixing and the influence of CB- and CNT-dispersion on dynamic-mechanical properties of NBR-vulcanizates. Furthermore, a LANXESS employee is supporting the Educational Symposium by giving an introductory lecture on the basics of rubber.
“The DKT once again will show how strongly LANXESS is anchored in the rubber industry as a synthetic rubber pioneer and networked with its protagonists,” says Werner Breuers. “With its excellent rubber raw materials, LANXESS offers not only the best answers to urgent questions in leading-edge rubber applications technology, but also is a sought-after consultant and recognized expert, whose employees are working on the front line to advance synthetic rubber as a material of the future. This also is one of the pillars of our market success.”
LANXESS is a leading specialty chemicals company with sales of EUR 8.8 billion in 2011 and currently around 16,800 employees in 30 countries. The company is at present represented at 49 production sites worldwide. The core business of LANXESS is the development, manufacturing and marketing of plastics, rubber, intermediates and specialty chemicals. LANXESS is a member of the leading sustainable indices Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) World and FTSE4Good.
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