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Celanese to expand Gur UHMWPE capacity in Texas

Number of visits: Date:2016-05-12

The specialty materials maker Celanese Corporation plans to expand manufacturing capacity of its Gur ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) product at the company’s Bishop (Texas) facility. Expansion of the Gur UHMWPE manufacturing facility will increase capacity to 38 kilo tonne per annum (kta), with final completion expected in May 2016.

“Increasing production capacity at our Bishop facility will enable Celanese to expand our reach, support a growing and diverse customer base, and respond to increasing consumer needs for materials in high-value lithium-ion battery, medical and pharmaceutical, and filtration applications,” said Scott Sutton, president, materials solutions for Celanese.

This capacity expansion provides Celanese with additional production flexibility to introduce two new medical Gur grades for the pharmaceutical industry. These new products will draw on the company’s expertise in manufacturing engineered materials with stringent raw material controls for product consistency and quality that meet pharmaceutical regulations. These new medical grades for the pharmaceutical industry will serve customer applications including filtering, purification of liquid drug formulations, and mechanically operated devices used in drug contact and delivery.

Gur UHMWPE is a linear polyethylene with a much higher molecular weight than standard PE, which offers good abrasion resistance, superior impact strength, non-sticking and self-lubricating properties, and excellent mechanical characteristics, even in cryogenic conditions. The material is eight times lighter than steel and lasts 10 times longer than high density PE in abrasive environments.

As a polyethylene with a very high molecular weight, Gur UHMWPE is produced as a powder that requires specific processing. In the semi-finished industry, the high pressures generated in compression moulding and ram extrusion processes fuse the particles together. The material is then typically formed into stock shapes or profiles. 

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TypeInfo: Industry news

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