Nova Accelerates Pace of Advanced Sclairtech Commercialization
After a successful retrofit of its Sarnia, Ont.-based facility's A-line, NOVA Chemical Corp. is on a steep trajectory toward full commercialization of its proprietary Advanced SCLAIRTECH technology. A...
After a successful retrofit of its Sarnia, Ont.-based facility’s A-line, NOVA Chemical Corp. is on a steep trajectory toward full commercialization of its proprietary Advanced SCLAIRTECH technology. According to vice-president of technology, olefins/polyolefins, Paul Clark, the retro-fitted line is being used to produce and supply selected grades of polyethylene resin with enhanced material and processing properties to development partners, some of which are located in Canada. The effort is in anticipation of the start-up of NOVA Chemical’s new 850 million lb. capacity Advanced SCLAIRTECH (AST) facility in Joffre, Alta. scheduled for the summer of 2000.
“We’re making commercial quantities of resin and the current focus is on octene co-monomer modified products,” says Clark. “We’re specifically looking at using these resins in applications such as heavy duty shipping bags, retail trash bags and other types of film products.”
Clark says the learning experience gained from retro-fitting and running Advanced SCLAIRTECH technology at Sarnia will be a benefit when the Joffre facility is brought on line.
“There’s naturally going to be a steep learning curve when you’re bringing the world’s largest resin-producing facility into operation,” says Clark.
Advanced SCLAIRTECH technology is based on a new, high efficiency Ziegler-Natta catalyst, as well as a newly designed dual-reactor system that allows for a highly controlled reaction environment. Resins made from the process are said to have improved performance and processing properties, as well as lower manufacturing costs, in comparison to metallocene-catalyzed resins. Clark says NOVA Chemicals is ultimately aiming the technology at high-performance applications such as breathable films, engineered packaging, rotomolding and others.