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FOCUS ON: Chemical Innovations

March 1, 2004
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INVISTA sets course to increase impact in adhesives and sealants marketplace



INVISTA is the new name for the business that brought the world nylon and well-known consumer brands like Lycra® elastane and Stainmaster® carpet, as well as the chemical intermediates Adi-pure® adipic acid and Dytek® amines, which have been making a difference in the adhesives and sealants market for years.

On November 17, 2003, Koch Industries agreed to purchase INVISTA from DuPont, pending government approval. The sale marks the end of an era for DuPont, which is officially severing ties with the nylon, polyester and spandex fiber businesses and specialty intermediates that were core to the company.

One thing that isn't changing at INVISTA is its heritage in chemical innovation. Many of the same people who, over the years, helped DuPont earn its solid reputation as a technology leader remain part of INVISTA.

"INVISTA is built on DuPont innovation," says Greg Biederman, vice president of INVISTA, Specialty Intermediates. "At the same time, we have the determination and the right people to build a rich tradition of innovation as part of Koch Industries."

In Specialty Intermediates, that means a renewed drive to find new uses for current products and to create new offerings for new applications. The company is committed to helping formulators of adhesives and sealants innovate in ways that improve the performance of their offerings.

The Specialty Intermediates product portfolio has strong trade brands that are used as building blocks for a variety of adhesive and sealant applications. Following is a list of these products, along with examples of some of the value they bring to adhesive and sealant applications.

  • Adi-pure is a high-purity adipic acid widely used as an intermediate in polyols and polyesters. Adi-pure adds value in hot melt applications, especially when quick crystallization is required. It also has applications in biodegradable polyester adhesives and adhesives for hot-sealing applications.
  • C12TM high-performance intermediates are a family of linear and cyclic 12 carbon diols, diacids, and other specialty intermediates. These products offer thermal and hydrolytic stability and flexibility due to their large carbon backbone. For example, C12 DDDA (1,12-dodecanedioic acid) is used in reactive hot melt systems to reduce the tendency to crystallize, allowing adhesives of this type to be sprayed and then cured. DDDA is also used in non-reactive hot-melt (polyamide) adhesives.
  • DBETM is a family of four- to six-carbon diesters and diacids, which are typically used as solvents. DBE solvents are used for cleaning adhesives from substrates or manufacturing equipment. These dibasic esters are particularly useful as carrier solvents, plasticizers, or tackifiers for solventborne adhesives.
  • Dytek intermediates include a line of multifunctional amine and nitrile products used in adhesives, sealants, and elastomers, and also as cross-linkers in polyurethanes. These diverse amine molecules give formulators flexibility in controlling cure time in epoxies.
  • Terathane®, in combination with other materials, can be used to form a variety of polyurethanes, polyesters, and polyamid elastomers.

"A fundamental strength of INVISTA is our ability to develop value-adding offerings for specific markets," Biederman says. "One of INVISTA Specialty Intermediates' core capabilities is our expertise in chemistry, which allows us to partner with formulators and tailor molecules to meet their requirements."

Biederman adds that the company has a track record of taking new products from lab to commercial scale efficiently and effectively. He expects this to further improve as INVISTA Specialty Intermediates adopts Koch's market-based management philosophy.

INVISTA is looking to partner with adhesive and sealant manufacturers who know the market and understand where there is potential for new, cutting-edge offerings. They would be formulators who are looking for ways to improve the performance of their offerings through the chemical building blocks used in formulating their products.

The strength of these partnerships is that the benefits accrue to both parties. That's the win-win proposition that built INVISTA Specialty Intermediates and will continue to drive its success for years to come.

For more information, contact Maria Gramig, INVISTA Inc., 4417 Lancaster Pike, Chestnut Run Plaza 723, Wilmington, DE 19805; phone 302-999-4781; fax 302-999-4839; e-mail maria.f.gramig@invista.com ; or visit http://www.invista.com .

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