Aramco Performance Materials (APM) returned this year to North America’s Foam Expo in March with market-ready carbon dioxide (CO2) polyols.
Since its public debut last year, APM has attracted significant interest from major U.S. and global polyurethane manufacturers, as well as fabricators and end-users looking for strong product performance with improved sustainability features.
A new kind of polyols
Polyols are not new. However, these are not conventional polyols. APM has been able to differentiate itself in the marketplace by creating them in an entirely new way.
APM uses a proprietary catalyst that takes waste CO2 as a main feedstock and combines it with propylene oxide to create a poly (propylene carbonate) polyol — a high performance polyurethane building block with a reduced carbon footprint.
During the opening day of the conference, APM president Peter Shepard updated attendees on Converge® technology and product advances in a panel discussion titled “Evaluating Developments in the Polycarbonate (CO2) Polyols Market for the Polyurethane Industry.” Shepard said CO2 feedstock is a trend that will become common practice.
“Consumers are demanding that sustainable materials be incorporated into end-products,” said Shepard. “Industry is responding by turning waste CO2 into profitable, commercially viable opportunities — not only in polymers and polyols, but in chemicals, as well as other sectors such as fuels.”
Showcasing Converge® technology
Panelists discussed topics such as market trends and the impact on the polyurethane foam industry, how regulations can promote the adoption of this technology, and the next steps in innovations incorporating sustainable CO2-based polyols.
Abdullah AlYahya, APM Commercial director, described Foam Expo as a great platform to showcase Converge® technology.
“We had steady traffic from current and potential customers in a variety of market segments such as automotive and furniture, and they all had one common goal — enhanced performance,” said AlYahya.
A dinner event with potential customers highlighted the performance advantages of Converge® products in flexible and rigid foams. The event provided a great opportunity to hear directly from customers and understand the limitations they face today when using conventional polyols.
AlYahya said customers are searching for solutions to their unmet needs and are viewing Converge® technology as a unique solution and a way to differentiate their products in the future.