- Construction of a new hollow fibre spinning plant in Schörfling
- Strong demand for SEPURAN® membranes in biogas, nitrogen, hydrogen and natural gas applications
- Investment strengthens technology leadership in membrane-based gas separation
Schörfling, Austria. Evonik is building a new hollow fibre spinning plant for the production of gas separation membranes at its Austrian site in Schörfling am Attersee. With the new capacity, the Group aims to meet the strong demand for SEPURAN® membranes in biogas, nitrogen, hydrogen and natural gas applications. Evonik is investing a low-double-digit million Euro sum in the new plant, which is scheduled to come on stream in the first quarter of 2023. Around 30 new jobs will be created in Schörfling.
"The gas separation market is convinced of our innovative membrane technology. Having developed and established the biogas industry in close cooperation with our partners, we are establishing our SEPURAN® membranes as the new standard for efficient gas separation in demanding nitrogen, hydrogen and natural gas applications. The additional production capacities will secure our growth targets in these important markets for us," says Dr. Goetz Baumgarten, Head of the Membranes Innovation Growth Field at Evonik.
Becoming the market leader for separation membranes
The new hollow fibre spinning plant is a construction twin of the production line that Evonik started up in 2017. In it, a high-performance polymer is processed into fine hollow fibres in several process steps. They are at the heart of SEPURAN® membrane technology. Evonik is the world's only backward-integrated manufacturer of highly selective gas separation membranes. The specialty chemicals company draws on its many years of expertise in polymer chemistry and adjusts key membrane properties already at the development stage of the base material—the high-performance polymer—to produce particularly selective and robust membranes that can withstand extreme pressures and temperatures.
"By expanding our capacities in Schörfling, we are sending an important signal to our customers that Evonik believes in the markets in the future and will continue to support customers' growth. The construction of the new hollow fibre spinning plant also testifies to our clear ambition to become the market leader in membrane-based separation technologies in the coming years," says Dr. Iordanis Savvopoulos, Head of the Fibres, Foams and Membranes Product Line at Evonik.
Polymer-based membrane technology for gas separation
SEPURAN® membranes make it possible to separate gases such as methane (CH4), nitrogen (N2), or hydrogen (H2) from gas mixtures. The advantages of Evonik's membrane technology are more precise separation of the gases and higher productivity. SEPURAN® N2 membranes for efficient nitrogen generation are used, for example, to inert aircraft tanks. SEPURAN® Noble membranes extract hydrogen transported through natural gas pipelines selectively from the CH4/H2 gas mixture at the delivery points. SEPURAN® NG membranes enable efficient natural gas processing from gas sources with high CO2 concentration.
Close to the Schörfling site in Lenzing, Upper Austria, the base material - the high-performance polymer polyimide - is produced and processed into fine hollow fibers in Schörfling.
Evonik is one of the world leaders in specialty chemicals. The company is active in more than 100 countries around the world and generated sales of €12.2 billion and an operating profit (adjusted EBITDA) of €1.91 billion in 2020. Evonik goes far beyond chemistry to create innovative, profitable and sustainable solutions for customers. About 33,000 employees work together for a common purpose: We want to improve life today and tomorrow.
About Smart Materials
The Smart Materials division includes businesses with innovative materials that enable resource-saving solutions and replace conventional materials. They are the smart answer to the major challenges of our time: environment, energy efficiency, urbanization, mobility and health. The Smart Materials division generated sales of €3.24 billion in 2020 with about 7,900 employees.
In so far as forecasts or expectations are expressed in this press release or where our statements concern the future, these forecasts, expectations or statements may involve known or unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual results or developments may vary, depending on changes in the operating environment. Neither Evonik Industries AG nor its group companies assume an obligation to update the forecasts, expectations or statements contained in this release.