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Chemical Manufacturing

The Chemical Manufacturing Blog is the place for conversation and discussion about process equipment and control, biotech & environmental, specialty chemicals and nano-engineering. Here, you'll find everything from application ideas, to news and industry trends, to hot topics and cutting edge innovations.

More Labs Adopt LOC Technology

Posted January 14, 2016 12:00 AM by IHS Engineering360 eNewsletter

Conventional benchtop analytical instruments such as spectrometers, blood analyzers, and flow cytometers rule the roost in medical, chemical, and R&D labs worldwide. But an entirely new class of instruments is rapidly gaining acceptance. Called lab-on-chip, or LOC, these tiny microfluidic platforms can mix and analyze minute amounts of chemicals in fluid channels whose diameters can be measured in nanometers. Moreover, these miniature labs often can achieve faster analytic results with far less fluid consumption, thus cutting the costs of reagents and other chemicals.


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Asia Chemical Outlook Healthy

Posted December 17, 2015 12:00 AM by IHS Engineering360 eNewsletter

Chemical demand in China is healthy and will continue to grow, despite the country's slowing economy, IHS Chemical analysts say. China is the world's largest consumer of chemicals and analysts don't forecast a falloff in demand, even if growth isn't exactly robust. However, the outlook remains mixed in the rest of Asia and chemical manufacturers could see margins slip in 2016 due in part to concerns over the health of China's economy as well as new worldwide capacity coming online in 2017.


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Biocompatible Molecule Improves Allergy Treatment

Posted November 15, 2015 12:00 AM by IHS Engineering360 eNewsletter

Allergies can pose a serious health threat to many people, causing a severe rash, itching, and difficulty breathing; sometimes even leading to death. While nanoparticle therapy can target specific allergens, the problem lies with the nanocarriers, which are slow to break down and hamper the drug's effectiveness. Now, researchers have designed a new nanocarrier based on the biocompatible molecule PEG, or polyethylene glycol, that releases its cargo only in targeted immune cells and degrades rapidly. The approach also holds promise for vaccines and immunotherapies for other ailments.


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Back to the Future for Petrochemicals

Posted October 15, 2015 12:00 AM by IHS Engineering360 eNewsletter

Looks like it's "back to the future" for petrochemicals. The extended slide in crude oil prices and the prospect of it taking years for a full price recovery has dramatic implications for chemical manufacturers. According to new report from IHS Chemical, a prolonged oil price recovery could shift the feedstock advantage from ethane back to more cost-competitive naphtha, a scenario not seen since the late 1980s.


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Ammonia Demand to Grow with Food Need

Posted August 14, 2015 12:00 AM by IHS Engineering360 eNewsletter

With the world population expected to grow by another 1 billion people over the coming years, feeding this burgeoning population will require new agricultural technologies and cultivating more marginal land. As a result, production of ammonia, one of the world's most widely used crop fertilizers, is expected to increase significantly, according to IHS Chemical. To keep pace with demand, a number of recent advances have been made in ammonia manufacturing processes to boost energy efficiency and output and lower operating costs.


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Boon for Europe's Chem Makers

Posted July 07, 2015 2:10 PM by IHS Engineering360 eNewsletter

Despite oil price volatility and a weakened euro, it's a good time to be a petrochemical producer in Europe. Buyers of naphtha, olefins, aromatics, and other petrochemicals are facing a once-in-a-generation supply squeeze, according to market analysis by IHS Chemical. This is the result of classic supply and demand fundamentals swinging back in favor of producers who are seeing improvement in European consumption, reduced imports due to the devalued euro, and petrochemical purchasers desperate to restock after waiting months for oil prices to continue falling.


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