Japan’s MRC cuts runs at acetone cyanohydrin-based MMA line to 70%

29 June 2012 12:45  [Source: ICIS news]

BRISBANE (ICIS)--Japan’s Mitsubishi Rayon Co (MRC) has lowered operating rates at its 107,000 tonne/year acetone cyanohydrin-based methyl methacrylate (MMA) line at Otake to 70% this week on shortage of feedstock hydrogen cyanide, a company source said on Friday.

The line is expected to run at 70% up to mid-July, with production loss estimated at around 4,000 tonnes, the source said.

The line was running at full tilt for most of June, as the company was supporting its Thai subsidiary Thai MMA, which is facing production constraints.

MRC, which is Asia's largest MMA producer, is also running its two 55,000 tonne/year butane-based MMA lines in Otake at full capacity, the source said.

“No customer is affected at the moment, as we still have stocks. However, we are expecting some customers to be affected in July and August, particularly customers in Japan,” the company source said.

Acetone and hydrogen cyanide are first reacted to produce acetone cyanohydrin. Sulphuric acid converts the cyanohydrin to methacrylamide sulphate. This is then treated with a methanol/water mixture and heated to form MMA and ammonium bisulphate.

By: Junie Lin

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