Speaking recently at the Government Hour in the State Duma, the Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov noted that in the first quarter of 2016 the index of industrial production in the manufacturing sector was minus 3.1 per cent. Nevertheless, growth was noted in a number of industries. This applies to the timber industry, pharmaceutical industry, production of medical devices and chemical complex.
Chemical production in the country as evidenced by the data of Rosstat, did not reduce the rate since the beginning of the year. So, in January, it was shown nearly 4 percent growth in February it was 2.9, and in March – 3 percent. Last year the industry completed with a score of 6.3 per cent. And in some regions, according to the president of the Russian Union of Chemists Victor Ivanov, production and revenue growth to 30 percent. The greatest potential for import substitution in the chemical complex, among others, has demonstrated the production of polymer products.
In the past year, according to the oil and gas chemistry development strategy for the period up to 2030 complete reconstruction of three petrochemical plants in the Stavropol Territory, Voronezh and Tomsk regions, commissioned a gas processing plant in the Khanty. In total, according to the Ministry of Energy of Russia, 4.7 million tons of bulk polymers it was released last year, with the addition in 2014 of 14 percent. This year, this amount will increase to 5.1 million tons.
“By 2030, will be introduced nine plants for the production of bulk polymers Total investment will amount to more than 2.2 trillion rubles This will increase the production of large polymers to 11.1 million tons, and to overcome them import dependence..”, – Said the Minister of Energy Alexander Novak.
A hundred years ago the great Russian chemist Dmitri Mendeleev and industrialist said that “you can drown and banknotes”, bearing in mind that it is absurd to use hydrocarbon raw materials – oil and gas, exclusively as a fuel. However, until now humanity is often irrational use of hydrocarbons, although logical and efficient to process organic raw materials to polymeric materials.
But just in the last couple of years there have been amazing changes in the world economy – oil and gas will no longer “Rule the World” and do not determine the vector of development of a country. But this led to the final realization that there is nothing more senseless than to burn in the furnace base in organic chemistry. Care about their future, not only visionary living present a serious companies understand that investing money now in chemical research will turn not only profits, but also the development of human society.
That is why the world has witnessed the rapid development of a chemical complex, and in particular, the chemical industry. Chemical complex occupies the first place in terms of innovations per employee, even ahead of pharmaceuticals and automotive. Especially it concerns the production of petroleum products and gas products, like modern polymers. By 2030, the expected increase in consumption of polymeric compounds up to 128 dollars per capita, whereas now the figure is twice lower – only $ 63. By this year, especially dramatically increase the release of high-tech products, for example, total world chemical production in the amount of $ 7.8 trillion in the production of plastics, rubber and paint products, chemical fibers and threads (projected) amount to 2.2 trillion dollars.
In Russia, the development of the chemical complex will be provided by 2030, due to increased production of hydrocarbons (59 million tonnes compared to 44 million tons in 2015), and the growth of the raw material consumption will increase by 2.4 times. The priority areas will be the consumption of plastic products up to 70.4 kilograms per person in 2030 (in 2015 – only 30.2 kilograms), but still remain much lower than the world average consumption by the year – 140 kilograms.
The most important polymer materials remain polyester and polyamide fibers, polyethylene, polypropylene, significantly increase the production of polyurethanes and polycarbonates. Consumption of paints, some of the major products in terms of the use of organic chemistry in 2030 should reach 22 kilograms per capita, which will reduce the gap with consumption in developed countries. It should be noted that modern polymers have much more attractive consumer properties than the materials of the past century, including in terms of their disposal after use.
Scout for innovation, Europe Evonik Chimia Arkady Mayzels pointed to “RG”, that the list of industries related somehow with organic chemistry, is extremely large and includes oil, gas and coke, paint industry, production of adhesives and sealants , polymeric materials, feed and food, pharmaceuticals and more. Of course, each of these sectors should be considered separately, but there are common parameters that allow you to get a rough idea about the role of organic chemistry in the economy of a single country.
These parameters include the annual production of polymer, paint and other materials per capita, etc. While Russia much smaller than those from the countries of Western Europe and the United States, but the gap is gradually reduced due to the transition to new technologies in various industries.
Of course, the development of such technologies and their implementation requires solid investments. But unfortunately, hypnosis fantastic prices extracted raw materials – oil and gas, at the time led to a decrease in interest in Russian companies, and the state as a whole, to R & D in the field of petrochemistry. And this despite the fact that it is a great scientific Petrochemical school was established in Russia. However, developments have not gone anywhere and were now more than demand. Today, when the income from the sale of the same primitive oil and gas fell sharply, there is finally a need for the production of this raw material processing products. Experts say (and rightly so) that after four or five of hydrocarbons processing steps the cost of the final product is increased almost ten times. For example, this is true for a simple chain as natural gas – ethane – ethylene – polyethylene – products made of polyethylene. Some of the products obtained after five stages of processing of oil and associated petroleum gas, exceed the cost of the same amount of raw material is more than ten times.
However, even the most prosperous Russian companies have not been able to sort out the situation it is necessary to modernize production. Thus, the company “Gazprom” has invested in research and development a couple of years ago, only 643 million euros, “Rosneft” – 205 million, and LUKOIL – 108 million euros. Why “only”? Yes, because the large foreign corporations to invest in R & D for more than 5 percent of its revenues, whereas the Russian – less than 1 percent.
Nevertheless, the process, as the saying went. The Russian offices of foreign companies, such as “Kovestro” (a relatively new player in the global and Russian market in September 2015 was spun off from the parent company “Bayer”), established and well-financed their own research centers, in which Russian specialists are working to obtain a qualitative education in the best universities of the country, such as at the Chemistry Faculty of Moscow State University. The main effort is focused on development of new synthesis, especially polymeric materials with predetermined properties. Moreover, in view of Russian specifics, including climate. For example, polymeric materials for external insulation of building structures to withstand a six-month Russian winter, and the related R & D in this case is not a whim, but an absolute necessity.
And although in recent years the company has virtually no “revolutionary” inventions, eg in the synthesis of new compounds, its specialists are working hard to improve the properties of existing polymers. Moreover, the main focus is on the creation of energy-saving materials and lightweight composite structures.
In the near future will go to the market innovative products with new properties, to which the Russian market certainly react positively. Thus, for the production of polyurethane foam “Kovestro” starts to use carbon dioxide, replacing them some petrochemical products. Such a change is possible, since both substances contain a common element – carbon, which is vital for the chemical industry and the production of polyurethane. Already this year, the company plans to begin production of this material on an industrial scale with the further use of it in the production of sleeping mattresses (dream reaction draft). Although the Russian market is not very well perceived innovative products, since the use of new products often means replacing equipment, increasing costs and increasing end product value.
However, the Russian company’s plant for the production of polyurethane systems in addition to the use of imported raw materials polyol – the second component in the synthesis of local production. And Russian specialists participate in the development of its production technology, as the company does not seek to carry out a simple transfer from other countries, and is trying to adapt the best European practices for the Russian market, its local laboratories developing special formulations for Russian clients.
Do not “asleep” and others in the industry. So, in SIBUR believe that the most promising is now considered to be resource-efficient technologies of monomers and polymerization processes and alternative technological solutions to be used as a raw material coal, natural gas and biomass. It might be effective technology oxidative coupling of methane, but today the company focuses on the production of polypropylene – it is made road construction materials, pipes, diapers, food film. And of polyethylene from which the pipe is manufactured, various films, Automotive Spare Parts and packaging materials as well as PVC pipes and window profiles. Company Produces and polystyrene, which is used as insulation and packaging material.
The proportion of organic chemistry organic synthesis or turnover in the already mentioned contact Evonik company is about 90 percent. Part of hydrocarbons comes from Russia, but stressed Arkady Mayzels, a number of production units the company is cooperating with domestic manufacturers of more complex products. Among the promising areas of activity, the company allocates research into reusable polymer materials. And last year, Evonik Industries AG management awarded for the best invention of a group of employees who developed the technology to produce recyclable composite materials with a thermoplastic binder.
It is extremely important that in recent years has sharply increased interest in such long-used polymers such as polyethylene and polypropylene. General Director of Trade House “Plastic” Anna Dautova confirms that the most important raw material in the polymer industry today are the olefins, namely ethylene and propylene. Now we developed a number of projects for the production of raw materials and the most important of these polymers, and polyethylene and polypropylene consumption in Russia reached respectively 1.8 and 1 million tons. Experts believe the most promising project of the company “Nizhnekamskneftekhim” for the construction of ethylene complex with an annual capacity of 1.2 million tons and SIBUR project, which envisages construction near Tobolsk capacity to produce 1.5 million tons of ethylene, 500,000 tons of propylene, and large amounts of base polymers.
For Russian producers of polymers most promising is the expansion of the range of branded products, such a path and went to the company “Plastic”, specializing in high-strength engineering ABS plastics used in the automotive industry, technical articles in the electrical and household appliances. Historically, the company provides production car industry, but the change in market conditions prompted the development of new niches and new industries – they have become electrical and home appliances.
Thus, we see that criticism and at the same time a prophecy of our great compatriot, albeit with a delay of almost a century, beginning to bear fruit. Oil and gas are no longer seen as a simple and low-cost fuel, but as a source of value and almost inexhaustible raw material for producing essential materials for humans. This process is irreversible and is further evidence of the greatness of organic chemistry.