Huntsman Corporation announced that it has commenced preliminary engineering to expand production of methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI) by investment in a new, world scale MDI plant at its Geismar, Louisiana site.
The 400,000 metric ton expansion will leverage the significant advantages of the Geismar site, with its access to US shale gas, strong logistics base and excellent integration. The new capacity is expected to come on-stream in 2018 and will enable Huntsman to further support the growth of its customers worldwide.
MDI capacity at the site is currently undergoing an expansion to 500ktes, which is due to come on-stream next year. Huntsman's 760 acre Geismar site is the largest integrated MDI production facility in the Americas region.
MDI based polyurethanes are used in an extensive range of applications and markets - including construction, automotive, coatings and footwear - and provide key benefits of energy efficient insulation, comfort and well-being.
Anthony P. Hankins, President of Huntsman Polyurethanes, said: "Shale gas has significantly improved the economics of investing in US facilities and has helped our Geismar facility to establish a strong cost leadership position. The planned additional capacity will reinforce this position and establish the plant as a truly global supplier."
"Demand for MDI-based polyurethanes continues to grow at around 8% annually. In order to satisfy this demand, Huntsman Polyurethanes has a sustained global program of both upstream and downstream investment to support our customers' growth ambitions."
In addition to its Geismar facility, Huntsman Polyurethanes operates world scale MDI facilities at its sites in Rotterdam, Netherlands and Shanghai, China.
Huntsman will expand MDI production