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Polyethylene Technology


MarTECH™ Technology

MarTECH Technology

When our breakthrough loop slurry process was formally introduced in 1961, it immediately revolutionized the production of high-density polyethylene. Today we are a world leader in polyethylene production and licensing, with more than 1,000 related patents and more than 80 licensed plants in 20 countries.

The MarTECH™ Loop Slurry Process

The MarTECH™ loop slurry process, licensed by Chevron Phillips Chemical, is the world’s premiere process for the manufacture of high-density polyethylene (HDPE). Meeting customer demands with low costs, high efficiency, and a broad portfolio of polyethylene (PE) products for more than 50 years, the MarTECH™ loop slurry process remains one of the most versatile and profitable polyethylene producing processes in the industry.

Continuous Improvement

Our MarTECH™ loop slurry technology is the result of relentless focus on innovation. This cutting-edge technology achieves some of the widest product flexibility and largest world-scale facilities. We work directly with licensees to identify opportunities for further technology improvements and cost savings. That is why, year after year, Chevron Phillips Chemical continues to be an industry leader in innovation.


Process

The MarTECH Loop Slurry process

Used in both the Single Loop (SL) and Advanced Dual Loop (ADL) designs, the MarTECH™ loop slurry process represents one of the most widely accepted polyethylene production technologies in the industry.

The Unique MarTECH™ Loop Slurry Reactor Process

The MarTECH™ loop slurry process was formally introduced in 1961 and continues to be the premier loop slurry technology with ongoing research and development. Today, polyethylene is more popular than ever, and the our MarTECH™ loop slurry process and world-renowned product quality are the standard by which all other technologies are judged.

Exclusive Licensor of Advanced Dual Loop Technology

We are the exclusive licensor of the Advanced Dual Loop (ADL) technology. This state-of-the-art series reactor technology is a collaboration between Chevron Phillips Chemical and Total Petrochemicals. The ADL technology is capable of producing up to 500 kMTA and incorporates key advancements from modern loop slurry design. The MarTECH™ ADL process is capable of producing the unique bimodal dual loop products such as PE 100 pipe grades, Extreme Resistance to Crack (XRC) initiation pipe grades, bimodal films and enhanced bimodal blow molding resins, as well as the full product range of MarTECH™ technology SL products.


Advantages

MarTECH Loop Slurry Image

Advantages available in our breakthrough MarTECH™ loop slurry process today include low-cost world-scale reactor designs, efficient and reliable operations, proprietary catalysts, and one of the widest ranges of polyethylene products. The worldwide reputation and the exceptional resin margins produced by our technology give licensees a global advantage.

Low Capital Costs

Competing technologies require more complicated processes and techniques, increasing the cost to build and operate a facility. The MarTECH™ process benefits from a simpler design that allows for fast and less expensive construction, as well as simpler and more reliable operation.

Over the past two decades, a concerted engineering effort has allowed us to reduce process complexity of the plant design. These innovations have helped reduce the capital cost of construction by nearly 50% compared to earlier designs.

Low Operating Costs

The MarTECH™ loop slurry process is inherently efficient and reliable compared to alternative technologies due to the simplicity of its design. Efforts to simplify the process flow and reduce rotating equipment have both reduced cost and improved reliability, making the MarTECH™ loop slurry process a clear choice for trouble-free operation.


The MarTECH™ loop slurry process owes its extraordinary efficiency to three main features:

  • High On-Stream Factor: MarTECH™ loop slurry process plants have demonstrated on-stream factors of 98% and higher on an annual basis.
  • Operational Consistency: The MarTECH™ loop slurry process offers efficient reaction heat removal that allows for uniform reactor temperature control within a very tight range. Many competing technologies struggle with non-uniform reactor temperature, which can lead to formation of chunks and product quality variation.
  • Quick Product Transitions: The MarTECH™ loop slurry process can transition between resins faster than competitive processes due to proprietary catalyst and process designs, with typical transition times as short as three to six hours.

The current generation of loop slurry plants is a cumulative result of more than 50 years of scientific discovery and engineering design. In the past 20 years, Chevron Phillips Chemical scientists and engineers seeking to reduce capital and operating costs have made more than 100 design and mechanical improvements.

Globally Recognized Products/Higher Profitability

The MarTECH™ loop slurry process is capable of producing a wide range of polyethylene products, from a variety of catalyst types. Each type of polymer offers specific characteristics and end-use advantages.

Resins made with MarTECH™ loop slurry technology are the benchmark for high quality in many industries and often command a premium over competing products. Resins from the MarTECH™ process are the overwhelming choice for liquid food containers, household and industrial chemical (HIC) containers, pipe, geomembranes, industrial drums, and many other large-scale applications. Polyethylene resins made from the MarTECH™ loop slurry technology account for more than 20% of worldwide HDPE. Due to this wide acceptance, MarTECH™ process facilities have enjoyed among the highest margins year after year.


History

Postage Stamp

In 1951, research chemists Paul Hogan and Robert Banks were working to improve yields of high-octane gasoline when they discovered two of the world’s most essential plastics — polypropylene and high-density polyethylene. From that initial discovery came the development of the first commercially feasible polymerization process.

Today, Chevron Phillips Chemical research and development teams continue to develop more cost-effective ways to manufacture polyethylene. In the past ten years, the company’s scientists and engineers have implemented more than 100 separate improvements that have led to increased production, improved economy-of-scale due to major increases in the maximum reactor size, and significant decreases in the amount of energy and feedstock consumption required per pound of polymer.


  • 1951
    Discovery of chromium catalyst for production of high-density polyethylene (HDPE).
  • 1956
    Commercialized the first Cr-based HDPE using a solution process.
  • 1961
    Commercialized loop slurry process for HDPE.
  • 1978
    Commercialized Ziegler-type catalysts for the loop reactor.
  • 1983
    Awarded the composition of matter patent for crystalline polypropylene, after a 32-year court battle.
  • 1987
    Robert Banks and Paul Hogan received the Perkin Medal for their groundbreaking catalyst and process work that ushered in the era of polypropylene (PP) and HDPE.
  • 1990
    First commercial production of low-density linear polyethylene (LDLPE) in a loop. Based on in-situ hexene technology, LDLPE yields exceptional impact resistance and easier film processing.
  • 1996
    Commercialized mLLDPE for the loop, called mPact grade metallocene-based polyethylene, which resulted in the first true "swing" capacity, switching rapidly between low and high density PE.
  • 1997
    Discovered a new, low-cost way of activating metallocenes.
  • 2000
    Formation of Chevron Phillips Chemical from the chemicals and plastics divisions of Phillips Petroleum and Chevron Corporation.
  • 2003
    Commissioned 320 KMTA single-train MarTECH™ technology SL unit in Texas, USA.
  • 2008
    Hosted largest PE Information Exchange meeting in history, with more than 140 attendees.
  • 2010
    Signed cross-license agreement with Total, making Chevron Phillips Chemical the exclusive licensor of the Advanced Dual Loop (ADL) technology.
  • 2012
    Commissioned two 550 KMTA MarTECH™ technology loop slurry units, the largest HDPE reactors in the world.
  • 2013
    Announced plans for two 500 KMTA polyethylene units in Old Ocean, Texas, incorporating metallocene and ADL technologies.
  • 2014
    Chevron Phillips Chemical announced the use of the MarTECH™ trademark for its loop slurry technology.