Raffinate 1 + 2 Prices, markets & analysis
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Raffinate 1 + 2 news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Raffinate 1 + 2 analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Raffinate 1 + 2 marketplace.
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Raffinate 1 + 2: Market overview
Updated to Q4 2014
Raffinates 1 and 2 are by-products of ethylene and propylene production in a cracker via butadiene (BD) production. The European markets are structurally thin, as most companies keep material for captive use or are locked into long-term contracts.
Raffinate 1 is used in the manufacture of a variety of polymers, such as polyisobutylene (PIB) and butyl rubber, as well as fuel components, such as methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) and alkylate gasoline.
Raffinate 2’s main use is methyl ethyl ketone (MEK). Butene 1 can be extracted from it and this is a feedstock for linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE).
Values for both raffinates are expected to remain stable, driven primarily by steady demand into gasoline blending. Raffinates, though, can be utilised elsewhere. There could be some impact from any cutbacks on BD production, depending on its performance during the fourth quarter. Crude C4 feedstock constraints, because of reduced operations at ethylene-led crackers and the shift elsewhere to lighter feedstocks that do not produce C4, could impact on supply but given the long-term contracted nature of the markets, little impact is expected on a spot basis.
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Raffinate 1 + 2 news & analysis
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ICIS price assessments are based on information gathered from a wide cross-section of the market, comprising consumers, producers, traders and distributors from more than 250 reporters world-wide. Confirmed deals, verified by both buyer and seller, provide the foundation of our price assessments.
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Raffinate 1 + 2 Methodology
About Raffinate 1 + 2
Raffinate 1 and 2 are the streams produced from the processing of crude C4 olefins made as a by-product of ethylene manufacture from the steam cracking of liquid hydrocarbons such as naphtha and gas oil. Crude C4s typically contain butadiene, isobutene (isobutylene), butene-1, butene-2 and butane.
After butadiene is extracted from the crude C4 olefins, the remaining mixture of products (isobutene, butene-1, butene-2 and butane) is called Raffinate 1. After isobutene is removed from the Raffinate 1 stream, the remaining mixture of products is called Raffinate 2.
Isobutene from the Raffinate 1 stream is used in the manufacture of a variety of polymers such as polyisobutene (PIB) and butyl rubber, and fuel components such as methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) and gasoline alkylate.
Major polymer end uses include sealing compounds and adhesives for plastic products, protective coatings and cable insulating materials.
The n-butene from the Raffinate 2 stream can be used in the manufacture methyl ethyl ketone (MEK). Butene-1 is used as a comonomer in the production of linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE). Butene-2 can be converted to propylene in a metathesis (olefins conversion) plant.