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Title: Reticulated polyurethane foams and process for their production
Applicant/Assignee: Scott Paper Co.
Publication date: 2-03-1965
“Gist”: PU foams are reticulated by hydrolysis or explosion.
Why it is interesting: Reticulated foams are foams from which the membranes have been removed so that only a three dimensional network of strands or ‘struts’ remains. These materials are commercially available in different grades of stiffness and porosity and are useful in applications such as filtering, sound absorbing, padding and the like. The current invention – filed in 1964 but a ‘continuation’ of an application filed in 1956- teaches the two processes to reticulate PU foam still in use today. The first process uses an aqueous NaOH solution to hydrolyse the cell membranes, in the second process a foam block is brought in an autoclave together with an explosive gas mixture (e.g. a mixture of oxigen and acetylene) which is then made to explode using a spark plug. When executed correctly the explosion removes all cell membranes leaving the struts intact. ‘Explosive recticulation’ is one of my all-time favorite PU inventions: simple, yet very effective and very courageous. In the current culture of hyper-safety where employees have to report paper-cuts, inventions like this are no longer possible.
MOONACHIE — Federal inspectors are investigating an explosion Monday afternoon at a foam-manufacturing warehouse that authorities say caused minor injuries to four workers and prompted temporary air quality warnings for the surrounding area.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the incident, said Joanna Hawkins, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Department of Labor agency, which enforces safety and health protections for employees.
Seventeen people were in the Crest Foam Industries, Inc. facility at 100 Carol Place when the building was rocked by an explosion around 4:30 p.m., followed by a fire, authorities said. Four were treated at Hackensack University Medical Center for concussion-like injuries; the remaining 13 were decontaminated at the scene by Garfield’s Hazmat team, First Assistant Fire Chief Justin Derevyanik said — “Everybody's safe, everybody's going home tonight,” he said.
Derevyanik also said there been no release of hazardous materials into the surrounding community. The company building contains such materials and has reported in the past that it released what federal authorities say is a potential carcinogen.
The fire had been contained by 5:15 p.m., and air quality warnings were rescinded by 7 p.m., borough Police Chief Michael Maguire said. “Residents can open their windows again,” Maguire said after precautionary alerts had been issued.
Crest Foam produces foam for household products, medical industries and the military. It is a subsidiary of INOAC, a manufacturing company based in Japan. The explosion occurred as workers were performing a process known as “reticulation,” in which hydrogen and oxygen gases are used to open cells of foam, Crest Foam President Mike Bessette said.
Everybody in the building was able to exit on their own when the alarms sounded, Bessette said.
The building has been shut down because of concerns over its structural integrity — there was damage to electrical components and sprinklers in the building’s central area, authorities said. Once the investigation is completed the building will be turned back over to the owner, Derevyanik said.
At 6:30 p.m., emergency responders were seen carrying bags of contaminated debris out of the building, and Crest Foam workers in Hazmat suits were walking in the area around the scene.
Jeanne Baratta, chief of staff for Bergen County Executive Kathleen Donovan, confirmed that everybody inside the building had been accounted for. County emergency management officials reported chemicals had been released into the air, but none that would be considered threatening, Baratta said.
A call to Crest Foam’s main phone line was not answered immediately Monday afternoon.
In 2013 Crest Foam reported to the Environmental Protection Agency that it emitted 160 pounds of toluene diisocyanate, or TDI, into the air as part of its manufacturing processes. The substance is primarily used as a chemical intermediate in the production of polyurenthane products, such as foams, coatings, and elastomers, according to the EPA. TDI can irritate the eyes, nose and respiratory system, causing choking, chest pain, vomiting and asthmatic symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC also lists it as a “possible” human carcinogen, noting that exposure to commercial-grade TDI has been shown to cause cancer in laboratory animals.
The explosion Monday afternoon “shook the house,” said Victor Migliorino, 67, who lives at 3 Edstan Drive, around the corner from the plant.
“I figured it was a gas leak,” said Migliorino, a former fire fighter in Moonachie. Migliorino said he rushed out of the house to see what he could do to help. “My son-in-law is a boss at that plant, so I was concerned," he said.
When he got out of the house and started walking toward the plant, he said, he saw his son, also named Victor, a Moonachie police officer, drive past in his patrol car.
“He ran into the plant and I went out into the street to direct traffic until a sergeant showed up to relieve me,” Migliorino said. “Which was a good thing, because I was having an asthma attack and my heart wasn't feeling so good.”
The foam plant, like the rest of the area, was flooded with several feet of water during Superstorm Sandy two years ago. There had been concern at the time among local officials that some of the hazardous materials in the plant would leak out into the surrounding area.
Staff Writers John Ensslin and Jim O’Neill contributed to this story.
- See more at: http://www.northjersey.com/news/feds-investigating-moonachie-factory-blast-no-danger-to-neighbors-1.1108630#sthash.hHHll3ay.dpuf
By Daniel SiegalLaw360, Los Angeles (October 15, 2014, 7:35 PM ET) -- Dow Chemical Corp. on Tuesday urged the Tenth Circuit to grant an en banc rehearing of its appeal of a jury’s $1.06 billion price-fixing judgment against the company, saying an appellate panel’s affirmation of the judgment conflicted with U.S. Supreme Court precedent on class certification.
Focus article by Truong Mellor
European naphtha levels fell to their lowest point since June 2012 last week in tandem with weakening Brent futures, and this has helped pull benzene prices in the US back below $4.00/gal, also the first time since June 2012 that the US market dropped below this point.
Meanwhile, Asian benzene spot numbers also plunged, with several December FOB (free on board) Korea deals done below $1,150/tonne, continuing the downward trend seen last week driven by crude oil losses.
European benzene fundamentals had previously been looking bearish for the fourth quarter before the sharp drop in upstream numbers, with demand from key derivative markets overwhelmingly weak, and some length in the Asian market helping redress some of the tightness seen globally.
While there was some speculation that the cracker turnaround season in Europe would tighten feedstock availability and support benzene pricing into Q4, this upward momentum failed to materialise, closely mirroring price developments in October 2013. With the shutdown schedule well known in advance, players were able to prepare for potential supply disruptions, and limited pull from downstream buyers also helped counteract any tightness.
With several Asian benzene units coming on line since August, supply levels have lengthened throughout the region. Weak derivative demand has pushed a lot of this excess material to the US, which has brought pricing down and closed the steady backwardation seen throughout 2014.
There was a short-lived upturn on European benzene pricing during the 48th European Petrochemical Association (EPCA) meeting in Vienna, Austria, with October trading as high as $1,330/tonne CIF (cost, insurance & freight) ARA (Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp) amid concerns surrounding the outage at Shell’s Moerdijk site in the Netherlands.
However, October spot pricing came down as the week progressed, with deals done on Friday 10 October as low as $1,285/tonne. However, there was still some upward pressure on the front end of the market, with offers for early October still being heard at $1,325/tonne.
The October monthly benzene settlement was agreed earlier this month at $1,327/tonne FOB NWE (northwest Europe), with a rally on prompt availability concerns supporting the spot market in the days leading up to the settlement.
Bids and offers opened this week at $1,200-1,260/tonne, with a wide range between buyers and sellers limiting trading activity, while November was offered at $1,220/tonne.
October bids and offers were at $1,190-1,215/tonne this morning, but trading activity was limited so far, with buyers unsure of where the floor for the current downward trend is.
“Crude is really taking a beating, so benzene is following it down,” said one European benzene producer. “It is difficult to have a view on the market right now.”
The Company's New Production Facility Will Help it Meet the Demand For its Popular Line of Efficient Spray Foam Products
Arlington, TX / ACCESSWIRE / October 14, 2014 / Demilec, Inc., a distinguished manufacturer of spray polyurethane foam insulation and coatings, recently announced its decision to open a new production facility. By opening this latest location, Demilec will be able to meet the demand for its energy-efficient spray foam products.
According to one Demilec New Reviews, the new facility, which measure 58,995 square feet, is the only fully-automated spray foam plant in the world. Demilec plans to have its new location produce the following lines of products: Sealection (R) 500 and Agribalance (R).
Demilec commemorated its most recent location's grand opening by inviting top customers, industry experts, and local officials. Among those present were Arlington Deputy Mayor Pro Tem Charlie Parker and SPFA Executive Director Kurt Reisinberg. Those in attendance joined the company for a ceremonial ribbon cutting as well as a tour of the new facility.
"We invested more than $20 million in this new facility, and it can produce spray foam insulation for more than 500,000 homes each year," said Zain Mahmood, the Chief Executive Officer of Demilec. "As the only fully automated spray foam facility in the world, this plant produces the highest quality and most environmentally-sound products on the market."
Individuals interested in learning more about Demilec and its wide range of environmentally friendly products can visit the company's website or Spray Foam next chapter for more information. Over the last 25 years, Demilec has established itself as a leader in the polyurethane foam industry.
About Demilec, Inc:
Demilec is an industry-leading manufacturer of spray polyurethane foam insulation and coatings. Using world-renowned technology and science, the company created a line of products that help its clients create an energy efficient, quiet, and comfortable indoor environment. Demilec's products have received numerous awards and certifications for their energy efficiency as well as for their high renewable and recycled content including the esteemed GREENGUARD (R) and GREENGUARD (R) for Children & Schools Certifications. Whether a client is a homeowner, builder, insulation contractor or architect, Demilec has services available to help make their choice of insulation and air sealing simple. Demilec has approximately 200 employees in the U.S. and Canada. For more information, please visit
ORLANDO, Fla., Oct. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- They splinter. They warp. They absorb moisture, which can lead to contamination. The drawbacks associated with the use of wooden pallets go on and on. But now there is a better alternative: RM2 has developed a composite pallet that resolves many of the issues the material handling industry faces related to traditional wooden pallets.
The BLOCKPal™ pallet from RM2 is pultruded from polyurethane resin from Bayer MaterialScience LLC. Specially designed for use in pultrusion, Bayer's Baydur® PUL 2500 resin is a two-component polyurethane system that offers excellent composite properties, including superior elongation to failure characteristics, greater shear strength and higher impact resistance.
Unlike pallets made from wood, RM2 testing of the BLOCKPal pallet indicates it is not subject to contamination from bacteria or insects, or splintering caused by rough or repeated handling. In fact, based on its findings, RM2 estimates that BLOCKPal pallets are up to 20 times more durable than wooden pallets. Not only does extending pallet service life minimize costly workflow interruptions, it also helps reduce the need to constantly replace traditional wood pallets.
"Our innovation in materials and design enables our innovation in economics," explained Niall Carson, business development, RM2. "Because our composite pallets are significantly more durable, we can provide significant economic benefits to our customer base."
According to Carson, RM2's out-of-the-box approach relates not only to the pallet material but also to the pallet supply chain: instead of incurring the cost of purchasing and replacing pallets outright, customers lease the pallets from RM2. "We're changing the way our customers look at pallets – from a consumable to an asset that can generate significant accretive profit margin," said Carson.
In addition to supplying the custom polyurethane resin system, Bayer also provided pultrusion tooling and process support, part design recommendations, material enhancements and on-site process support. "RM2 is really shaking up the material handling industry with its improved pallet design and innovative business model," said Paul Platte, market manager – Polyurethane Composites, Bayer MaterialScience LLC. "These composite pallets are just the latest illustration of how pultruded polyurethane is delivering significant value to diverse industries."
BLOCKPal pallets are available in standard footprints: 1,200 mm x 1,000-mm, 1,200 mm x 800 mm, 1,165 mm x 1,165 mm and 48 in. by 40 in., as well as in customized sizes for specialized applications. The pallets have been independently tested by leading institutions and, according to RM2, have been shown regularly to outperform comparable products and industry standards. For instance, results following fire testing show the composite pallet passes UL 2335.
RM2 produces the pallets completely in house. The company pultrudes the polyurethane into three basic profiles (feet, slats and channels), paints the feet a distinctive yellow, applies an anti-skid coating and assembles the pallets.
The BLOCKPal™ pallet will be on display at Bayer's booth (3145) at CAMX, taking place Oct.14-16 in Orlando.