Dow Elastomers, a business unit of The Dow Chemical Company, will begin the production of AFFINITY™ GA Polyolefin Elastomers (POEs) for hot melt adhesives in Tarragona, Spain. This is a milestone for Dow, as it is the first time the production of AFFINITY™ GA POEs will take place in Europe. The decision to produce AFFINITY™ GA POEs in Tarragona will expand Dow's current capacity to serve the hot melt adhesives (HMA) market and is expected to come on-line in Q1 2014. Adding to existing production in Freeport, Texas, the capacity in Tarragona will enable sourcing from two continents, helping Dow to better serve its global customer base. AFFINITY™ GA POEs are specifically developed for HMA formulations and a range of polymer modification applications, and are characterized by novel chemistry that combines high flow, low crystallinity and low molecular weight, allowing processors and formulators to achieve faster flow in thermoplastic polyolefin blends that can demonstrate increased flexibility and durability, and HMAs that enhance bond strength. Customers may also achieve reduced clogging and charring, resulting in cost savings from less equipment failures, downtime and maintenance. These attributes position AFFINITY™ GA to be the winning technology in the HMA market.
"The scale advantages and product flexibility delivered through this investment in Tarragona will enable Dow to continue to meet the growing and evolving needs of our customers and the industry, while bolstering our ability to react quickly to market dynamics," said Kim Ann Mink, Ph.D., Business President, Dow Elastomers, Electrical & Telecommunications. "This investment in Tarragona along with the flexibility offered at our new, previously announced High Melt Index (HMI) elastomers train on the U.S. Gulf Coast will help ensure Dow keeps pace with demands for HMAs in end-of-line packaging and non-wovens for health and hygiene applications". "AFFINITY™ GA combines exceptional performance results with demonstrated cost savings to deliver end-user advantages not previously attainable with conventional formulations," said David Mitchell, Global Marketing Director, Elastomers, Electrical & Telecommunications. "This Tarragona train is a direct investment in our ability to meet growing demand for truly differentiated products, and in the continued growth of our customers and our business around the world."