The main market for bisphenol-A (BPA) is in the production of polycarbonate (PC) with the second largest outlet being epoxy resins. BPA consumption has been driven primarily by increasingly strong demand for polycarbonate resins. The other driver behind BPA demand is the strong growth in Asia, particularly China.
BPA global market growth is expected to be stable at 5%/year. Regionally, the Asian markets are predicted to grow at 11%/year with growth in China over 13%/year. However, the US and European markets are expected to be flat in 2010-2012, with an expected growth of 1-2% from 2012-2015, according to Mitsui.
Bisphenol-A is produced by the condensation of phenol and acetone in the presence of an acid catalyst or cation exchange resin and usually a promoter such as methyl mercaptan. Two grades of BPA are produced for epoxy resin manufacture and for polycarbonate production.
Bisphenol-A occurs as white crystals or flakes with a slightly phenolic odour. BPA dust, vapour and solutions can cause irritation to the skin, lungs and eyes.
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The main market for bisphenol-A (BPA) is in the production of polycarbonate (PC) with the second largest outlet being epoxy resins. Other uses include flame retardants (mainly tetrabromobisphenol-A), unsaturated polyester resins and polyacrylate, polyetherimide and polysulphone resins.
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Bisphenol A is produced by the condensation of phenol and acetone in the presence of an acid catalyst (hydrogen chloride) and usually a promoter such as methyl mercaptan. Cation exchange resins can replace the acid catalyst in newer plants.
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INSIGHT: Outlook has to remain cautious in low growth environment
“Production of plastic resins was flat in April while production of specialty chemicals fell."
VIDEO - ICIS Americas Lunchtime Bulletin 22 May 2013