Ahead of rCB 2022 we spoke to Nick White, Vice President of Business Development, Process Oils at Ergon, Inc. & Process Oils, Inc. We asked for his thoughts on his presentation, any challenges and opportunities within the market and what he is most looking forward to.
You are speaking in the section of the agenda which looks at the synergies between pyrolysis oil and recovered carbon black. Can you give us a snapshot of what delegates will hear?
The chemical and petrochemical industry faces the challenge of balancing transformation and competitiveness. In this regard, our company is supporting the industry's goals of climate neutrality together with our customers by exploring pathways to a more circular and cost-competitive economy. Ergon's investigation of waste materials from different streams as feedstock to produce more climate-friendly products is a high priority and active project. Our talk highlights application-oriented examples of these efforts and carbon footprint assessments.
What do you see as the major challenges and opportunities for RCB? How might that change in near-mid future – anything evolutionary / revolutionary on the horizon?
The push for sustainability has increased over the past year, which poses an opportunity to further develop and commercialize novel materials like rCB. Such products would greatly help the industry achieve its sustainability goals but attaining stable and predictable material quality is still a big challenge for the carbon black industry. Incorporating this material into tires represents another challenge, as further research is necessary to ensure that rCB can replace conventional CB in all applications. Standardization of pyrolysis products is another challenge.
What are you most looking forward to hearing about and discussing with your peers at this year’s Conference?
Circular economy and sustainability have been the driving force for developing the still young rCB market. I look forward to learning from additional perspectives regarding rCB's process-related developments, synergies between pyrolysis oil and recovered carbon black, and life cycle assessments associated with these products.