Honeywell has tripled production capacity for its low-global-warming-potential (GWP) product HFO-1234ze to meet the growing need for the material, which is used in multiple foam and aerosol applications. The expansion was made at Honeywell’s HFO-1234ze manufacturing facility at Buffalo, through equipment upgrades and overall productivity improvements during the last 18 months. Terrence Hahn, Vice President and General Manager for Honeywell’s Fluorine Products business said that in the last several quarters, Honeywell has seen a significant increase in demand for HFO-1234ze from the aerosol and foam industries, and a number of customers have signed long-term contracts. He also said that the company is committed to meeting the demands of our foam and aerosol industry customers both now and in the future.
HFO-1234ze was accepted for use in foam and aerosols by the US Environmental Protection Agency in June 2010. Earlier this year, the agency allowed HFO-1234ze to be sold in the US The material is non-flammable, non-ozone depleting and has a GWP of 6. HFO-1234ze can replace HFC-134a (with a GWP of 1,430) and HFC-152a (with a GWP of 124) in aerosol applications and thermal insulating foams including extruded polystyrene board. It is also being considered to replace HFC-134a for chiller applications Honeywell’s Buffalo Research Lab is where Honeywell pioneered the development of hydrofluoroolefins (HFOs), which are a family of unique products that offer similar performance properties to today's most widely used refrigerants, blowing agents and aerosol propellants, but with the added benefit of having very low global warming potentials. HFO-1234ze is currently used in the U.S., Europe and Japan. The majority of HFO-1234ze demand is from Europe. In addition to HFO-1234ze, Honeywell has developed HFO-1234yf, which is being adopted by automobile manufacturers as a replacement for the current hydrofluorocarbon used in automobile air conditioning, HFC-134a.