Saturday, May 23, 2015

India is Facing Polypropylene Shortages

The 2014 report “Indian Petrochemical Industry – Country Paper from India”, written by India’s Chemicals & Petrochemicals Manufacturers’ Association, provides data on India’s actual and estimated propylene capacity and production amounts from 2010 to 2016.   Also provided are polypropylene actual and estimated demand amounts from 2010 to 2014.  (Click here to read the report – PDF file)   Using this data, I computed the compound annual growth rates (CAGRs) for the propylene capacity and production amounts and for the polypropylene demand amounts.  (3.5% CAGR for propylene capacity; 5.4% for propylene production; 6.7% for polypropylene demand)

Assuming amounts provided in the report are reasonably accurate and polypropylene is produced only from propylene, beginning in 2018 India will lack sufficient propylene processing capacity to meet the country’s polypropylene demand.  In 2018, polypropylene demand will be 5,400,480 metric tons and the propylene capacity will be 5,311,684 metric tons, a propylene shortage of 88,796 metric tons.  The propylene shortage will increase at a 25% CAGR reaching 979,925 metric tons by 2022.

India’s impressive GDP growth rate accounts for the polypropylene demand rate.  The long-term construction time and high expense to build facilities that can process petroleum into propylene is a factor in India’s lag in keeping up with the polypropylene demand.


I did an Internet search to find Indian companies that manufacture propylene. The table below shows what I found.  The total found capacity agrees reasonably well with the data in the Indian report referred to above.

abbreviated name full name parent/joint venture location propylene capacity (metric tons)
bcpl brahmaputra cracker & polymer ltd (bcpl) gail/indian oil/assam gov't/numaligarh refinery ltd dibrugarh, assam 60,000
bpcl  bharat  petroleum corporation limited (bpcl) bharat  petroleum corporation limited (bpcl) kochi 500,000
cpcl chennai petroleum corporation limited(cpcl) indian oil company chennai 35,000
hmel hindustan-mittal energy ltd (hmel) hindustan petrolleum corporation/mittal energy bhatinda 450,000
hpc hindustan petrolleum corporation hindustan petrolleum corporation visakhapatnam 65,000
hpl  haldia petroleum ltd (hpl) haldia petroleum ltd kolkata 345,000
ioc indian oil company (ioc) indian oil company panipat 650,000
ioc indian oil company (ioc) indian oil company mathura 165,000
opal ongc petro additions ltd (opal) ongc/gail/gujarat state petroleum dahej, gujarat 400,000
ril reliance industries (ril) reliance industries vadodara 110,000
ril reliance industries (ril) reliance industries hazira 350,000
ril reliance industries (ril) reliance industries dahej  360,000
ril reliance industries (ril) reliance industries nagothane 65,000
ril reliance industries (ril) reliance industries jamnagar 920,000
total propylene capacity 4,475,000

Thursday, May 14, 2015

What Companies Write About Their Energy Storage Interests in their 10Ks

Using WordsAnalytics (click here to read about WordsAnalytics), I did a search of company 10Ks using the search term “energy storage”.  I did this to identify companies that have interests in energy storage and to read about these interests (e.g., projects, business activities, affects of energy storage on their businesses, etc.)

Here are 21 companies that I found with business interests in energy storage.  Provided with the company names are very brief summaries indicating the company's energy storage interests.

Abakan - nano-engineered particle-based solutions for energy storage and release

AES - runs battery-based energy storage systems, with 228 MW in operation or under construction

Albemarle - lithium-based energy storage products

Altair Nanotechnologies - nano lithium titanate batteries for use in energy storage systems (biggest market, electric grid)

Biosolar - low cost polymer-based components for electrical energy storage; polymer-based supercapacitors

Calgon Carbon - activated carbon uses in energy-storage applications

China Sun Group High Tech - produces cobaltosic oxide and lithium iron phosphate – both cathode materials for lithium batteries

Dow Chemcial - formulated electrolytes for lithium batteries in energy storage applications

FluxPower Holdings - advanced energy storage systems

FMC - lithium-based energy storage products

FuelCell Energy - solid oxide fuel cells for energy storage applications

Graftech International - primary graphite powders for use in energy storage applications

Highpower International - lithium and nickel metal hydride batteries for energy storage applications

PNM Resources - runs a 500 KW energy storage project, featuring one of the largest combinations of battery storage and PV solar energy; involves research and development of smart grid concepts

Polypore - membranes that separate cathodes and anodes for both lithium and lead acid batteries

Solar City  -  solar energy storage systems for back-up power, time-of-use energy arbitrage, rate arbitrage, peak demand shaving, and demand responses

Sunpower - distributed energy storage sites, comprising batteries, power electronics, and multiple energy inputs controlled by cloud-based software

Tesla - energy storage products for backup power, peak demand reduction, demand responses, and wholesale electric market services

Ultralife - lithium batteries for grid-connected energy storage

Xiangtian - proprietary compressed air energy storage power generation technology, powered by renewable energy sources

ZBB Energy - utility grid and building energy storage and power control products and systems 

More details can be found on the above products and services in the companies’ 10Ks. 

Based upon the searching described above, here are some conclusions:

1.  More and more states require or are considering requirements that electricity-generating utilities implement energy storage systems.  These states include:  California; New York; Texas; Hawaii; and Washington.   These requirements, and what seems to me to be obvious consensus in technology and policy communities, suggest the importance of energy storage systems in an overall program in lessening fossil fuel usage (and accordingly decreasing carbon dioxide emissions);
2.  This increasing demand for energy storage systems is reflected in the list of companies above, as well as in many private companies that are offering energy storage products and services; and

3.  Much of the technology needed for these energy storage systems (and for their improvements) is chemical technology, which is reflected in the many chemical companies identified above.