Japan's Mitsui Chemicals restarts hydroquinone unit at Iwakuni-Ohtake

21 January 2013 07:13  [Source: ICIS news]

TOKYO (ICIS)--Japanese chemical producer Mitsui Chemicals restarted its 11,500 tonne/year hydroquinone plant at Iwakuni-Ohtake Works on 17 January following its shutdown because of an explosion at the site in April 2012, a company spokesman said on Monday.

The plant, located in Yamaguchi prefecture, is currently running at full rate, he said.

The hydroquinone plant had been shut since the resorcinol facility at Iwakuni-Ohtake exploded on 22 April 2012.

Hydroquinone is an anti-aging additive for synthetic rubber.

Mitsui Chemicals plans to restart its cymene plant, the only remaining plant at Iwakuni-Ohtake which is still shut, in mid-2013, the spokesman said.

Cymene is a feedstock of meta-para-cresol, which is also produced at Iwakuni-Ohtake.

Currently, cymene is produced at Mitsui Chemicals’ Ichihara works in Chiba prefecture while the cymene plant at Iwakuni-Ohtake is shut, according to the spokesman.

The 24,000 tonne/year meta-para-cresol plant at Iwakuni-Ohtake was restarted in September 2012, the spokesman said.

Mitsui Chemicals exited from resorcinol production at the end of 2012 because the damage to the plant was significant, and it would also be difficult to reacquire its customers.

By: Tomomi Yokomura
+65 6780 4359

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