chemical plant

Chemical prices plunged in China market

The price of thermal coal has dropped from its highest price of USD312/mt on October 19 to USD166 /mt in the China market. The price is almost down by 47%, nearly half. The price drop of thermal coal also dragged down the price of coal chemicals. Menanwhile, this dropping trend also inspire the spot market . The price of PVC, methanol, styrene, isobutylol, new glutaradiol has a sharp down trend , which makes a surprise in the market.

chemical plant

The price of coal chemical product has fallen sharply with the collapse of coal price

With the Chinese government taking all measures to maintain the steady supply of coal and electricity power, the coal price has dropped accordingly. And this also becomes the key reason for the sudden price dropping in the coal chemicals and other chemical raw material. Epoxy resin has a continuous sharp increase in past months. But its price has lowered down sharply recently. The price of solid epoxy resin is USD4200/MT, which is USD300/MT lower than one week ago. With the price dropping, the downstream customers are expecting lower price at USD4100 or even lower price of USD3950. And this also makes the market transaction atmosphere weak.

 

In addition to the epoxy resin, many other chemicals such as epoxy chlorpropane, phosphate, yellow phosphorus, and butyadiene have a price decline after China’s gold nine silver ten sales season. since early November, prices began to decrease. The price has plunged more than USD1300/MT one wek from USD5080 to USD3780/mt. This makes the whole chemical industry entering into winter before hand. The price of DMC was  USD6300/mt, down by USD1000/mt from the previous week, and the price of silicone oil(Polydimethylsiloxane) was USD6500/mt, which is 34% down from the highest point. Also, The pvc futures has fell five times by the daily limit. With the futures price continued to weaken, it is negative for the spot market. And now the quotation of PVC in future market and spot market two weak spot market was in chaos. In some regions, the price of PVC has dropped to less than USD1400/MT. Under the suppression of falling futures prices, traders are selling stocks immediately.

From the current series of actions of restraining unreasonable price increase of bulk commodities, the price increase expectation of chemical raw materials in next six months is very limited, and most products will gradually return to a reasonable range.

With the impact of the price reduction news, real order is very limited when some enterprises quote at high price. The less transaction also dragged the market down and the expectation of transaction is weakening. Some Industry experts said that one of the reasons for the price decrease is that the new expanded production capacity leads to obvious supply increment. And the buyers has strong bearish mood on the transaction with the supply and demand imbalance.

Chemical products

40 chemical products have drop in price with decrease more than USD130/MT 

With continuous hot increase in the recent chemical market, there are many chemicals with sudden price drop. And many of them are the products with hot increase and reach their historic highest point. This rapid change has made the buyers unpredictable.

The price of liquid ammonia was USD620/MT, and there is a price drop of USD130/MT with 20% less comparing with early August. With the impact of enterprise maintenance and shortage of domestic goods, liquid ammonia experienced a soaring market in mid-to-late July.  But the increase didn’t last long, and the price of liquid ammonia continued to decrease. With the poor traffic situation and high inventory caused by the epidemic, together with the high output at high operating,as well as less demand, the price of liquid ammonia dropped again and again.

Previously, the price of trichloromethane had started a speeding process. The price soared to USD546/MT, and even over USD635/MT. There was a single-day increase at 8.7%, which was the highest one-day increase in past 10 years. But with the high temperature weather cooling down, the demand from the refrigerant market become weak, domestic sales and foreign trade are not as expected, and its raw material liquid chlorine price is low. With all these impacts, trichloromethane prices dropped by 16% from early August.

Since the beginning of 2021, the price of PTA cost-end crude oil and PX has been increasing, and its auxiliary material acetic acid also has significant increase.Till the end of July, the PTA price was more than USD800/MT and some large scale factories even cut orders due to insufficient supply.However, with the operating of new PTA devices, the supply will increase. And now the domestic PTA price has dropped below USD710/MT. Its price has dropped by 13% comparing with the beginning of August.

Due to the influence of Shanxi flood, many urea factories in Jincheng stopped production. With the reduction of the market inventory and other multiple positive factors, the domestic urea spot market had a rise, and the local urea prices hit a new high. But with the end of peak agricultural season, and the industrial demand is insufficient, the market trend of urea is depressed. The price even drooped two times in one day. In order to ensure order volumes, the big factories have offered preferential price policies. Thus, the actual transaction price is much lower than expected, and the price decreased by USD60/MT or 12.37% from the beginning of August.

The export market of domestic MMA has expanded rapidly, and the monthly export volume has reached new highs. With more MMA export, less import and less output, the  market inventory of MMA in China market has decreased sharply, and the price has exceeded USD2222/MT. But by the end of Oct., the buyers are mostly watching and the negotiations were deadlocked.And the price is down by USD270/MT from the beginning of August with a drop around 11%.

Isooctanol prices had soared to USD2950/MT, up by 156% from the same period last year. While due to the weakened raw material price, and the supply increase, its prices also fell slightly.The newest offer is now decreased by USD200/MT with a decrease of 6.9% from early august.

The price of ethylene glycol has rushed to USD950/MT at a new high. But due to the rapid decrease in the downstream polyester end. The market expectation is not optimistic. Along with the supply recovery, the tight market inventory situation has finished. Its current price is down by USD60/MT at around 6% from early August.

It is reported that Wanhua Chemical, BASF, Shanghai Hensmai and Dow Chemical have all raised the price of MDI products. The supply of MDI is also tightening, and its prices have increased from June 2021, soaring from USD1900/MT to USD4500/MT. This price is almost highest in nearly three years. But recently the MDI market atmosphere turned weak and the price can be negotiated. The current market offer has decreased by USD200/MT around 5.64% from early August.

Ethyl acetate prices reached USD1450/MT and is highest in a decade. But the recent transaction price of main factories has declined and the trading atmosphere is not positive. The current price is down by USD80/MT and is around 4.91% lower comparing with early August. The ethyl acetate in China market may continue to weaken in short term.

In the silicone industry, the price is decreasing continuously since early November. DMC price has dropped to USD4900/MT, which is almost half of the price from the highest point in last month. With the DMC price plunging, price of dimethicone silicone oil and 107 RTV also dropped. The newest silicone oil PDMS price is around USD6900/MT. The sudden price drop makes the procurement stop the purchase and those who bought at higher price would have a stock loss.

In the titanium dioxide industry, with the winter coming, the construction coating consumption is decreasing. And the main market price of Rutile titanium dioxide like Lomon 996 is USD3200/MT. Other brands has a price of USD3100 to USD3300. with the demand weakening, the price of titanium dioxide can be negotiated as per the orders.

The organic pigment price also stopped increase and some item has a slight price drawback. The price of pigment yellow 74 has dropped from USD10.95/kg to USD10.50/kg. Products like Pigment Yellow 12 Pigment Yellow 13 also stopped for a further increase.

A collection of price decline of different chemical products

The price of dimethyl carbonate was USD1370/MT, down by USD740/MT from the previous week.

The phosphate price was USD2000/MT, down by USD690/MT from the previous week.

The liquid epoxy resin was quoted at USD5000/MT, down by USD630/mt from the previous week.

The price of propylene glycol was USD3450/MT, down by USD330/MT from the previous week.

DMF was quoted at USD2570/MT, down by USD280/MT from the previous week.

Butadiene was quoted at USD1060/MT, down by USD250/MT from the previous week.

MMA was quoted at USD1960/MT, down by USD20/MT from the previous week.

The price of natural anhydride was USD2400/MT, down by USD130/MT from the previous week.

Liquid chlorine price was USD200/MT, down by USD110/MT the previous week.

The caustic soda price was USD190/MT, down by USD60/MT from the previous week.

Phenol was quoted at USD1500/MT, down by USD60/MT from the previous week.

The PTA was quoted USD770/MT, down by USD56/mt from the previous week.

 

From the above datas, it is not difficult to see that the recent decline in chemical products mainly focuses on the previous chemical products with sharp increase, such as hydroxybenzene, ethylene glycol, polymerized MDI, ethyl acetate, etc. This is also in line with the previous market analysis which says that the chemical products would not always on the rise side and it would come down after it reach the peak.

chemical news

 

Why does the prices of chemical products plunge?

For the sudden plunge of the prices of chemical products, the experts says this is related to the recent huge changes in the chemical industry chain. The supply and demand situation between coal and other energy terminals is quietly changing. The downstream demand is lessening and the goods transportation is blocked in some regions due to heavy snow. All the different reasons to jointly lead to the diving of chemical products prices.

With the upstream raw material coal price has halved, the pressure for the chemical enterprises has been lessened in some degree. But the complex downstream situation still makes the chemical enterprises anxious. With the the end of the year getting closer and closer, the dual control policy on energy consumption is also becoming stricter. With the power limit, the orders  of downstream industry such as coating, plastics, clothing and textile, foreign trade processing industry and other industries are suppressed. So the transaction atmosphere in the market is not positive.

With the accumulation of inventory, the price have a trend of moving downward. With the temperature drop in the fourth quarter, the production and sales of many industries have entered into the off-season, and they have  resistance to the high cost of upstream raw materials. At the same time, with the mentality of buying at rise and not buying at decreasing, the purchase is very limited and a shrinkage in transaction is very obvious. With downstream customers continue to negotiate for discount prices, the market transaction is in dead-block. With the transaction pressure and pessimistic views on the market, some chemical enterprises have prices continuously.

Some chemical enterprises said that for the last two months of 2021, the focus is no longer securing more orders but to maintain a stable capital chain. With the uncertain industry situation, the chemical enterprises choose stabilize the old customers. For the new customers, they will only receive cash orders. They may also limit production and sales to avoid risks and maintain a stable capital chain to the greatest extent. Prices are no longer the key at the present. How to ensure to pass the winter safely and continue to spint in 2022 is the key.

chemical plant

How is the impact of power limit on the chemical industry

Recently,the Dual Control System of Total Energy Consumption and Energy Intensity has lit a Red Light in many provinces of China. The provinces named by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology have taken measures to solve the energy consumption problem since there is only 4 months to the year end.Guangdong,Jiangsu,and other major chemical provinces made strict policies in limit using of electricity and in limit production to thousands of enterprises.Why there is energy limit and production limit?What impacts will it have to the China chemcial industry?

 

 

Many provinces pull the plug, cut the power and limit the production

Recently, many provinces such as Jiangsu, Guangdong,Yunnan, Qinghai, Ningxia, Henan, Chongqing, Guangxi,Sichuan, Inner Mongolia, Heilongjiang and others started to carry out power control measures of dual energy consumption to meet the control targets.Electricity restriction measure has gradually spread from the central and western regions of China to the eastern Yangtze River Delta and Pearl River Delta, etc.

Henan: The electricity limit will be for more than three weeks for some processing enterprises

Sichuan: Suspension of non-necessary production load, lighting load and office load.

Chongqing: Some factories cut power and stopped production in early August.

Inner Mongolia: The electricity price would be increased by not more than 10%.

Qinghai: An early warning of power limit is announced and the area of power limit continues to expand.

Ningxia: The power for high-level energy-consuming enterprises will be limited for a month.

Shaanxi: The power limit will be extended to the end of the year.Yulin city will limit the production of dual high enterprises to the level of 50-60%,

Yunnan: Two rounds of power limit have been launched. The average monthly output of industrial silicon from September to December shall be limited to less than 10% of August output (i. e., 90% reduction); the average monthly output of yellow phosphorus shall be limited to 10% of August 2021 output (i. e., 90% reduction).

Guangxi: Guangxi has introduced new dual control measures, requiring  enterprises with the production of electrolytic aluminum, aluminum oxide, steel and cement limit their production starting from September

Shandong: there is a power limit of 9 hours daily,mainly at 15:00-24:00, the shortcoming time continued to September,The power limit measures would be implemented

Jiangsu: In early September, Jiangsu Provincial Department of Industry and Information Technology carried out special energy conservation supervision for enterprises with more than 50,000 tons of standard coal annually. In the cluster area of printing and dyeing , more than 1,000 enterprises will produce for two days and stop production for two days.

Zhejiang: Production will be stopped for the key energy-consuming enterprises until September 30.

Anhui: There is a power shortage of 2.5 million kilowatts and it is decided to start an orderly electricity consumption plan from September 22.

Guangdong: From September 16, the electricity plan work for two days and stop for 5 days was implemented

 

 

Reasons for power cut and production limit or shutdown

 

In essence, the power cut is due to the short of coal and power. The national coal output is almost same as 2019, but the power generation is increasing. The the coal inventory of various power plants are significantly in recent years.The reasons behind the coal shortage are as follows:

1.In the early coal supply side reform, open-air coal minesand some small coal mines with safety problems were closed. With good coal demand this year, the coal supply was quite in tight;

2.The export is very good this year, and the electricity consumption from light industry enterprises and low-end manufacturing industry is rising. But the power plants consume large amount of coals. The high price of coal has increased the production cost of power plants, which makes power plants at deficit;

3.The import of coal has changed from Australia to other countries. There is an increase in the import cost and global coal is also at high price.

Following is a diagram of China coal output in recent years

Coal output

 

Why not expand the coal supply, but rather limit the power?

In fact, the total power generation in 2021 is not low.In the first half ofyear 2021, China has generated 3,871.7 billion kilowatt-hours,which is twice that of the United States.Meanwhile, China’s export has increased extremely rapid this year.

 

According to the data released by the General Administration of Customs,   China’s total import and export of foreign trade has reached 3.43 trillion yuan in August, up by 18.9% comparing that of 2020. And the positive growth has been last for 15 consecutive month.In the first eight months of 2021, China’s total imports and exports reached 24.78 trillion yuan, up by 23.7% year on year and 22.8% over the same period in 2019.

 

The reason for export increase is that affected by the epidemic, the production in many countries are not normal, so the production task in China increases. With the increase in export,the demand of raw materials also increased. The import for commodities products also soared.From the end of 2020, the increase of steel price is caused by the price increase of iron ore and iron fine powder which are imported from other countries.The main production means in the manufacturing industry is raw materials and electricity.With the production task increases,China’s electricity demand continues to increase. Why not to expand the coal supply, but instead to limit electricity?On the one hand, the demand for power generation is increasing, while the cost of power generation is also increasing.Since the beginning of 2021, the supply and demand of domestic coal continues to be tight. The price of thermal coal is high for in low season. The coal prices have risen sharply and maintained a high level.With the high price, the production and sales costs of power enterprises are seriously inverted. And the operating pressure of power enterprises is prominent.According to the data of CLP, the unit cost of standard coal for large power generation groups has increased by 50.5% year on year. But the electricity price has remained same. The loss of coal power enterprises was significantly increased, and and the whole industry is in loss.It is estimated that the loss of every power generation  will exceed 0.1 yuan for every 1 watt. And 100 million kilowatt will lose at least 10 million yuan. For the large power generation enterprises, their monthly loss will be over100 million yuan.On the one hand, the coal price remains high, on the other hand, the price of electricity is controlled by government. So it is difficult for power plants to have a balance. Thus, some power plants would rather generate less electricity.On the other hand,achieving the completion of industrial transformation requirements is urgent.China has to eliminate backward production capacity and implements supply-side reform.To realize the dual-carbon target and environmental protection need, as well as another important aim which is to realize industrial transformation. This is to change from traditional energy-cost production to emerging energy-saving production.In recent years, China has been working to reach this goal. But from last year, due to the epidemic,the demand and task of  the of high energy consuming products under high has increased.With the epidemic raged and global manufacturing stalled, there is large manufacturing orders returning to the mainland.This leads to a high consumption of power in the first 3 quarters of 2021. Also,the price of raw material, which price is dominated by international capital has soared in 2021 leads to a high production cost.In addition, for the domestic and global enviromental protectio, China will need efficient production capacity in the future. To reduce the energy consumption and carbon emissions of traditional industries, large-scale technological innovation and device transformation is needed.Thus, in short term,  to achieve the dual control goal, power and production limit is a way for traditional industries to achieve the goal.In addition, the inflation risks can be prevented in certain degree with the high soaring global price of iron, copper, oil, grain, and beans.

 

The Chinese government has been working hard for the dual control on energy consumption for the environmental protection. Due to the orders back to China from beginning of 2021, the busy production has lead to a high power consumption which is out of the expectation. After the review for the first 3 quarters, the energy consumption in many provinces is much higher. The consumption for the last 3 quarters already reaches the amount for the whole year.   The main energy consuming projects are mainly in six industries, including petrochemical, coal power, chemical, steel, non-ferrous metal smelting and building materials. With the over-consumed energy and power, many provinces have adopted the production and power limit policy and these lead to the enterprises feel unprepared.

 

What is the effect for the different industries?

 

With the background of sudden power and production limit from provincial governments, the chemical industry index has a sharp rise, different chemical raw materials has soared in price, and many related stock listed companies also have the daily raising limit frequently.According to the Business agency, the chemical index was 1137 on September 1 and was 1262 on September 30. This is a record high in the cycle.  Comparing with the lowest point of 598 points on April 08,2020, the index has rise by 111.04%.(Note: Period to 2011-12-01 till)

 

The new high price in chemical industry is mainly due to the dual  control and power restriction policy. As there are 9 provinces and autonomous regions whose energy consumption was much up in the first 3 quarter year on year! And another 10 provinces’ energy consumption reduction rate can not meet the requirements. This means the target of dual control is not reached in the first half year. So, every province has heavy task to take new measures to ensure the realization of the whole year’s target.

In 2020, due to COVID-19, the global economic activities have been greatly affected.the poor demand leads to the low prices of crude oil and bulk chemicals downstream. While in 2021, with the gradual control of epidemic and recover of global business, the production has recovered much and demand also increase. As per the monitoring industry data of the business agency, it can be seen that the price of many chemical sub-industries has increased in 2021, and some is up by more than 100% year on year.

 

As per the data, the price of 79 kinds of products in chemical sector increased in September 2021, 57 of them increasing more than 5%. the top three commodities with price increase were phosphate (161.44%), yellow phosphorus (108.70%) and caustic soda (90.00%).

There were 18 products with price declines, and 6 products down by more than 5%. The top 3 declines were butanadiene (-33.32%), butanol (industrial grade) (-33.62%), and isooctanol (-30.90%).

 

Product Industry Early Sep., price Late Sep., price Unit Monthly increase or decrease
Phosphoric acid Chemical 1195.3125 3125 USD/MT 161.44%
Yellow Phosphorus Chemical 4492.1875 9375 USD/MT 108.70%
Caustic Soda Chemical 101.5625 192.96875 USD/MT 90%
DMC(Silicone) Chemical 5859.375 9890.625 USD/MT 68.80%
R134A Chemical 3489.53125 5755.15625 USD/MT 64.93%
Silicone Adjuvant Chemical 5300 8700 USD/MT 64.15%
Acetic anhydride Chemical 1507.8125 2335.9375 USD/MT 54.92%
Epichlorohydrin Chemical 2260.3125 3317.65625 USD/MT 46.77%
Acrylic Acid Chemical 2307.1875 2869.6875 USD/MT 24.36%
Propylene Glycol Chemical 2666.5625 3296.875 USD/MT 23.63%
Rutile Titanium Dioxide Chemical 3050 3200 USD/MT 4.92%

 

In September, the price of phosphrous chemical price has reached a ten year high.Except the phosphorus ammonium market remains stable at a high price, phosphate and phosphate ore have sharp increase after yellow phosphorus. Under the dual control policy, yellow phosphorus related enterprises have serious limit in electricity and production capacity, thus the tight market supply situation cannot be changed in a short time.But till the end of September, most phosphorus chemical products have risen to a high level. Downstream enterprises need to be more cautious for take in new raw material. In general, there could be a certain pullback in the phosphorus chemical, but in a short time it may still remain at a high price.

 

Besides phosphrous chemical, the acetic acid industry also has big increase in September. The price of acetate products rose by 47.69%. Its upstream raw material methanol has increased by 37.86%. And downstream acetic anhydride by 54.92%, EVA increased by 38.82%, ethyl acetate by 25.23%, and PTA by 3.49%. Affected by the dual control policy, many acetic acid industry chain enterprises has stopped production and price has increased much. After the CHina National Holiday, with the production recovery in October, the supply and demand of the acetate industry chain has been more eased. According to the statistics of the production plan of acetic industry, the supply growth in October is expected to be more than the growth of demand, the price of acetate industry is expected to drop some in October.

 

In addition, the price of the chlor-alkali sector in the chemical industry has also increased, with caustic soda rising by 90% in September, calcium carbide by 39.45%, pvc by 34.45% and soda by 34.05%. With the dual control policy, the production capacity of chlorine-alkali industry in October is expected to be relatively low. With the relatively tight supply and high price of raw materials, it is expected that the prices of soda, caustic soda, baking soda would be stable at a high level.Actual situation will be depended on the demand.

 

Besides the basic chemical, chemical products such as organic pigments(Pigment Red 122, Pigment Violet 19, Pigment Yellow 74, Pigment Yellow 12), Anatase titanium Dioxide, Silicone leveling agent, Dimethicone, and optical brightener all have price increase at different range.

 

The recent large-scale power restriction would have a big impact on the manufacturing industry, and long-term environmental protection policy still exist, the price rise of commodity prices will transmitted to the downstream, which will squeeze the profit and living space of downstream enterprise .In addition, the control on high energy consumption industry is a long-term trend, so the short-term policy will only affect the production limit time and the trend for energy saving will not be changed. Therefore, with the inflation risk in the fourth quarter, the traditional high demand months will lead to a further price increase of chemical products. in the background of global energy shortage, product prices have rising trend, but the height of the chemical market would be subject to the demand situation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Organic Pigments

What are the basic information about organic pigments

As suggested by the name, coloring agents are the material that can provide people the color they need. Color agents have their own specific colors, which includes a variety of colors such as white, black, as well as gray.

Colorants are grouped into two categories: dyes and pigments. The main differences between dyes and pigments are:

Solubility: In the using process, dyes can be dissolved in the application(some dyes such as disperse dyes are partially dissolved), but pigments are not soluble or its solubility is very low. Solubility is a very important item that determines the performance of pigments such as migration and color penetrating. Sometimes, to improve the application properties of certain pigments, the solubility of pigments should be improved in the application.

In the using process, pigments have particle form and crystal shape. These play important roles in the color and application properties of organic pigments. Dyes dont have requirements on this aspect.

The color of pigment almost represents its using color in the substrate. With the dilute proportion, only the shade of pigments changes, but the basic color is not changing. This is to say that the color of the colored substrate is the color of pigment itself. While for dyes, the tone of the color will be changed when there is chemical reaction. They dyeing color is different with the color of dye.

Different Properties of Pigments    

Color shades of Organic Pigments

For a long time, visual judgement is the basic color evaluation way, which relies on the well-trained and professional color judge personnel. But it is difficult to judge whose eyes can be the standard judge. Along with the development of color evaluation judgement, a more  scientific evaluation system is established. The use of color tester can make the color description qualitatively and quantitatively.

The definition of color cannot be easily described orally. For example, what color can be called red? No matter how many modifiers are added, it is still not so accurate. Such as magenta, brick red, poldo red. But if we can make a color sample or a color card, the color is defined more obviously.

In the actual application, people like to choose a standard pigment as per their demand. And then they will test the new sample against their standard sample in certain testing system. A sample color will be made from standard sample and new sample and the shade difference will be compared. The common color system used is CIE*LAB system, and the XYZ three-stimulus value system that can be interconverted.

Organic Pigments color cards

Coloring strength

The concept of color strength has absolute color strength and relative color strength. Absolute color strength is based on pigment absorbance of lights, which is the maximum absorption wavelength or the overall absorption coefficient of the whole visible spectrum (the latter can be depended on the components of the different spectra).

Relative coloring strength is the relative value obtained from comparing the light absorption coefficient between the sample and the standard pigment. The ratio of the number of sample pigments matched to the number of standard pigments when reaching the same color depth.Accurate matches are not always found, because there are inherent differences in color light between the two, which cannot be eliminated by quantity alone, and whose color differences can be formulated through the CIE*LAB system.

The color force of the pigment will have different results according to its application conditions, that is, different color exhibition methods, as well as different measurement methods, and evaluation methods.

 

Opaque or transparency

It refers to the ability of pigment substrate to cover the color of the target layer. This is to define the covered area by paint colored with pigments, or it can refer to the the minimum thickness of the layer needed to cover the substrate.

To effectively cover the substrate, the coating must scatter. The amount of scattering is related with the coating thickness, the light absorption inside the coating, as well as the color difference of the substrate

Solvent resistance and various fastness

According to the definition of pigment,it should not be soluble in the application. but the absolute insolubility is not possible.There is certain solubility as per different application or different processing conditions. So if the solvent in in the carrier reach certain amount, recrystallization, color penetrating, or overflow will happen. It is very important to prevent the dissolution of pigment.The factors that can control the solubility of pigments include solvent, the particle size, the chemical structure of the pigment, as well as the processing temperature.

This is a testing method to judge pigment resistance to some solvent: put the pigment powder into filter paper, put it into a tube with solvent. The weight of the solvent and pigment should be determined. After a set at room temperature for the hours, the solvent resistance of pigment can be judged from the stained situation of solvent. This method may not fully represent the actual application, but the result is similar. If the pigment is vert dissolved , it could be problem for organic pigments to use in the application containing this kind of solvent. Problems such as color penetrating,  fastness or flow will occur.

 

Water resistance, soap washing resistance, alkali resistance, acid resistance:

For the above resistance, there are two aspects, one is about pigment’s chemical stability in these solvents and the other is the solubility in these solvents.

This resistance is mainly about pigments’s resistance situation in the processing and application stage. For example,in the water transfer process of pigment filter cake, it needs pigments to be good resistant to water. In the application of printing ink, it requires pigments to be resistant  to water or alkali water. In the application of exterior wall coating, it requires pigments to be resistant to the alkali in cement or lime resistant. During car washing, it requires organic pigments in automotive paint to be resistant to alkali water or detergent, etc.

Some pigments or lake pigments contain free alkaline or acid groups, will form salt in alkali or acid and this will cause color change, etc.

Threre are standard testing methods to test this properties. And the evaluation is according to level 1-5,grade 5 is best. A suitable testing method should be selected to test pigments. The test results are not same when pigment is directly exposed to acid and alkali or when pigments are made into coating and then exposed to acid or alkali.

Printing of package

Due to different packaging materials and the items packaged, there are different fastness requirements, such as oil resistance, wax resistance, cheese resistance, drug resistance, disinfectant resistance, steaming resistance, thermal sealing resistance (including the color change of coating and physical damage to the film, adhesion to the instrument) etc.

Organic Pigments

 

Textile fastness

Textile fastness refers to the colour maintaining ability of dyed filaments or dyed textile during processing or application.Such as water resistance during washing, peroxidation resistance, bleaching resistance of chlorine acid, friction resistance, sweat resistance (including enzyme),  ironing resistance, acid and alkali resistance, solvent resistance, dry washing resistance, and sodium hydrosulfite resistance, etc.

 

Migration resistance

Migration resistance efers to the occurrence of bleeding and frosting phenomenon.

Frosting means that the dissolved pigment will migrate to the surface again after it is erased. Bleeding means that the color will migrate to the similar material when get in touch.

The degree of migration is related to the particle distribution, chemical structure and content of the pigment.Migration is also related to all components of the material being colored, such as polymers, plasticizer, and stabilizers.

 

Effect on the pigment processing during application

Plate-out(ductility):During mixing or rolling, the pigment is deposited on the surface of the processing equipment or the system surface. Once the film is erased, it will not appear again.The reason is that the compatibility between lubricants, plasticizer, stabilizers and PVC is not good. And it is easy to migrate to the system surface, and bring out the pigment particles at the same time.  The method to avoid this is to reduce the pigment content or the processing temperature or adding hardener.)

Chalking(powder ization or pigment overflow): it mainly refers to the situation that the pigment carrier cannot completely wrap the pigment, and when it exceeds the critical volume concentration, the organic pigment will tun to the surface of the paint film. The reasons for chalking can be follows: high pigment content and less resin content; problem in the processing and pigments are not wrapped; large surface area; poor light and weather resistance of resin; poor light and weather resistance of pigments.

With the long time under UV and weathering time increasing, the pigment separated from the medium and the paint surface is damaged. The poor weather resistance of pigments or carrier materials promote pulverization.

 

Light resistance and weather resistance

light resistance: pigment’s ability to maintain the original color after long time sun exposure. The testing is based on the pigment dispersion system, not only the pigments. Most inorganic and all organic pigments will change color after long time light exposure.

The factors sensitive to light include the physical parameters (particle distribution, crystal type), the chemical structure of the pigment, and the properties of other components in the system.The xenon lamp is the standard test instrument for light resistance test.Pigment volume concentration,paint material, substrate, layer thickness, and other additive all have an influence on the test results.

Weather resistance: Light is not the only reason for the color change of the pigment. Other factors such as atmospheric water (or even the trace),industrial emissions, gas or climate changes also cause damage to the color of pigment. The test of weather resistance requires specific environments like temperature,light intensity, humidity, oxygen content, precipitation, air as well as the latitude and longitude and the proximity with the industrial zone. All these aspects will affect on the test result. Thus, industrial standards are formed in several countries.

The test will adopt accelerated aging instrument, which has similar condition with the outdoor environment. But for pigments with similar colors and different chemical structures, the exposure to xenon lamps or sunlight will vary due to the sensitivity of the pigments to the spectrum, especially in the UV region.

Thermal stability

The temperature resistance in the plastic industry and in the coloring of fiber raw pulp requires 260-320℃. This is a fatal natural defect for organic pigment as most organic pigments have a temperature resistance between 100 and 200℃. The thermal stability of the pigment is depended systematically. It not only depends on the chemical composition of the substrate, but also dispersion degree, processing conditions and pigment content.

In the coloring system, the reasons for thermal discoloration are: heat decomposition of pigments, chemical reaction of pigments with the substrate, the change of physical properties of the pigments, such as particle size change and the crystalline transition.

 

Fluidity

The viscosity of a system is determined by the overall component, including the actions between different components, dispersion conditions, and selection of components. The dispersion condition is most important such as wetting of the substrate, the opening of the aggregate, , dispersion degree and surface relationship. The influencing factors of pigment are as follows: concentration, particle shape, specific surface area, and surface structure.

Organic Pigments

Particle distribution and the property of substrate

Color strength: within certain range, The smaller is the pigment particles, the higher is the coloring strength of organic pigments. But after reaching the translucent point, the color strength will not further increase.(In the transparent system, there are pigments not following this rule).

Color shade: with the particle size increasing, the color will change as per some rules.The yellow color will shift to red; The orange color will shift to red shift, yellowish red  color will shift to blue, bluish red will shift to yellow, brown color will shift to red, purple color color will shift to blue, blue color will shift to red.

Light resistance and weather resistance: the larger the pigment particles, the better the light weather resistance.

Dispersion: pigment particles with narrow distribution is easier to disperse than wide distribution. Pigment with large particle size is easy to disperse. But dispersion is a complex process, disperison is also related with other factors.

Gloss: It is related with the dispersion of pigments and distribution of pigments. Bigger particle size has less gloss

Solvent resistance and migration resistance:  with the bigger particle size, solubility will decrease , and migration resistance will increase

Fluidity: the bigger the particle size, the better the fluidity and the less the viscosity.

 

Dispersion of pigments

The dispersion of pigment powder is related with many factors:

First are pigment related characteristics: chemical composition, particle distribution, crystal form, particle shape, surface structure, and the process of the pigment powder production, especially the drying and grinding process.

Second are physical and chemical properties of chemical components, which include molecular weight, polarity,  viscosity and compatibility of different components.

 

Popular Pigment Items for different application     

The manufacturer shall provide the pigment users certificates of analysis of pigments. But this is not enough for the application. End users should test organic pigments in their own paint, ink or palstic systems to confirm on if the organic pigments are suitable in their own product system.

Organic Pigments popular for paint include:Pigment Yellow 1, Pigment Yellow 3,  Pigment Yellow 17, Pigment Yellow 65, Pigment Yellow 74, Pigment Yellow 83, Pigment Red 2, Pigment Red 8, Pigment Red 22, Pigment Red 112, Pigment Red 122, Pigment Red 146, Pigment Red 170, Pigment orange 13,Pigment Orange 34,Pigment Orange 64, Pigment Violet 19, Pigment Violet 23

Organic pigments popular for Ink include:Pigment yellow 1, Pigment Yellow 12, Pigment Yellow 13, Pigment Yellow 14,  Pigment Yellow 83,  Pigment Red 81, Pigment Red 122, Pigment Red 254, Pigment Violet 3, Pigment Violet 27

Organic Pigment popular for Plastics: Pigment yellow 83, Pigment yellow 110, Pigment Yellow 180, Pigment Yellow 191, Pigment Red 53:1, Pigment Red 48:2, Pigment Red 122, Pigment Red 170, Pigment Red 254,  Pigment Orange 64, Pigment Violet 19