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Marl: Degussa AG Dusseldorf completed the start-up of its planned expansion for the production of triacetone amine, TAA, at the Marl Chemical Park. Through this expansion, Degussa's Fine Chemicals Business Unit is increasing capacity to 6000 tonnes of triacetone amine a year, doubling the capacity of the old, and now shut down, plant in Herne. Degussa is therefore one of the two largest producers of TAA in the world.
The Fine Chemicals Business Unit has extensive know-how in the production of both TAA and its derivatives, such as triacetone diamine (TAD), hexamethylene-bis-triacetone diamine (HMBTAD) as well as TEMPO compounds (tetramethylpiperidine-N-oxyl).
Triacetone amine derivates are further processed by additives manufacturers particularly as the starting products of what are commonly referred to as H.A.L.S. (Hindered Amine Light Stabilisers). These are used as UV stabilisers in the plastics, fibre and paint industries. The market for these products has a volume of around €50 million. Degussa is clearly top of the league in this market.
One new area of application for TAA derivates is their usage as catalysts in oxidation reactions. Customers in this sector, which is commonly referred to as Tempo derivatives, include the pharmaceutical and agricultural industry as well as the paper industry.
"The production of triacetone amine is Degussa's core business. This capacity expansion aims to serve the increasing world market requirements and to secure and develop Degussa's leading position in this market sector", says Dr. Frank Kraushaar, product line manager for triacetone amine TAA and derivatives, alkyl chloride (TD) in Degussa's Fine Chemicals Business Unit.
Particularly positive news for the Marl Chemical Park: Degussa invested around €12 million in the plant expansion. The company has been able to transfer twelve members of staff to Marl from the former production site in Herne. "Last but not least, as a result of the excellent expansion options open to the fine chemicals plant in Marl coupled with easy TAA handling, the site has been able to succeed against alternative sites for the TAA expansion investment", confirms Dr. Kraushaar.