Naphthenic plasticizer: an environmentally conscious alternative to aromatic extracts
Anita Neau, Nynas Naphthenics AB, Sweden and Marika Joona, Nynas Naphthenics, USA
The environmental impact of chemical products is an increasing concern among both authorities and chemical industries. In February 2004, the EU adopted a proposal of legislation to ban the use of distillate aromatic extracts in tires. Although the industrial rubber segment is not directly concerned by this directive yet, it is likely to experience its effects due to the lower demand on aromatic extracts and the consequent changes in the oil industry. Naphthenic plasticisers are one of the environmentally conscious alternatives to aromatic extracts. Their chemical nature gives them a good solvent power and good compatibility with most elastomers. Their performance in industrial rubber compounds will be compared with that of aromatic extracts and other possible alternative plasticisers.