LANXESS launches Group initiative for e-mobility
Cologne, Germany-based specialty chemicals company LANXESS is aiming to further strengthen its market position in technologies relating to new mobility. In the future, all activities in this area will be managed by a Group initiative for e-mobility. The new strategy unit will be headed by Philipp Junge, 44, currently head of the Rhein Chemie business unit, as of August 1, 2020.
“Modern mobility is one of the most dynamic growth sectors worldwide. LANXESS has a lot to offer here, from our high-tech plastics for electric vehicles to specialty chemicals for batteries. We want to expand this offering significantly, coordinate it more precisely and position it even stronger in the market,” says Anno Borkowsky, member of the LANXESS Board of Management.
Jens-Hendrik Fischer, 41, will be the new Head of the Rhein Chemie business unit, succeeding Junge. Fischer is currently responsible for the business with antioxidants and accelerators for the rubber industry within the LANXESS Advanced Industrial Intermediates business unit. It is planned that these products will be managed under the umbrella of Rhein Chemie, which already offers numerous specialty rubber additives. “Rhein Chemie would thus become the central business unit at LANXESS for products for the rubber industry,” says Borkowsky.
The Group’s high-performance plastics are used in electric vehicles, for example for lightweight car bodies or battery housings. They also have great potential in the infrastructure for e-mobility, such as charging stations, and in sensors, displays and control units for autonomous driving.
In addition, LANXESS is a leading manufacturer of numerous specialty chemicals that modern battery systems need such as phosphorus chemicals, hydrofluoric acid and flame retardants. Furthermore, the Group is working on the commercial production of lithium, the key component of lithium-ion batteries. At its site in El Dorado, Arkansas, U.S.A., LANXESS recently commissioned a pilot plant together with its partner Standard Lithium. The companies aim to use the plant to extract battery grade lithium from brine produced during the bromine production process at LANXESS.
At the site, LANXESS operates three plants manufacturing bromine products. The bromine is obtained from the brine extracted at the site, which also contains lithium. Standard Lithium has developed an innovative method for the extraction of high-purity lithium directly from brine. A pilot facility was set up on the plant premises and commissioned at the beginning of March 2020. LANXESS expects initial findings with regard to technological feasibility by mid-2020.