Following a detailed appraisal, the Cologne district authority has granted Bayer Material Science the permit to build and operate the new high-tech facility for the production of the chemical TDI (toluene diisocyanate) at Chempark Dormagen.
Dormagen/Germany – With an annual capacity of 300,000 metric tons, the future world-scale TDI plant is a key part of a long-term investment strategy at Bayer Material Science to turn its Dormagen site into a global technology center for the development and production of polyurethanes. The employees who will be working at the new TDI facility started their training last spring. They include 15 new employees who are working alongside staff at the current pilot plant and receiving intensive instruction. TDI is needed as a precursor for the manufacture of flexible polyurethane foams to make products such as high-quality foams for mattresses, chairs and car seats.
Construction progress on schedule
The approval authorities gave the go-ahead for the provisional start of construction in February 2012. Since then, work at the giant construction site has been progressing in leaps and bounds. In November, for example, the construction team reached a key milestone when the TDI plant’s 90.5 metric ton distillation column – a cylindrical steel structure – arrived at Chempark by truck. “If progress on site continues at this pace, there is nothing standing in the way of us completing and commissioning the plant midway through 2014,” says Dr. Steffen Kühling, who is in charge of production and technology in the Polyurethanes Business Unit.
Site’s long-term future secure
The construction phase of the project will create between 500 and 1,500 additional jobs. Many contractors come from the region, such as the piping planning firm Keynes from Neuss and equipment manufacturers Quast and Dormagen-based APL. Later on, when the facility is up and running, companies from Dormagen and the surrounding area will be involved in maintenance, construction and repair work, plus the provision of technical services in the area around the new plant. The project also safeguards existing upstream and logistics jobs at the site.
Detailed notification of approval
When providing notification of approval, the authorities give a detailed explanation of the reasons that led to their decision. The process involves examining the prerequisites for approval, summarizing and evaluating the environmental impact assessment and, last but not least, evaluating the safety concept. Any objections raised are also taken into account. The authorities granted the permit for the project following a detailed appraisal of all aspects involved and based on the documentation submitted.