BASF breaks Ground on Geismar MDI Capacity Upgrade

13.01.2023 - BASF has broken ground on the third and final phase of its expansion project for polyurethane precursor MDI at its integrated site in Geismar, Louisiana.

The project announced in July 2022 will widen production capacity to around 600,000 t/y by the middle of the decade to support demand growth in North America.

The German chemicals and plastics giant is spending $780 million on the current two phases, lasting from 2022 to 2025, The total investment value comes to around $1 billion, making this BASF’s largest wholly owned investment in North America. 

Through this investment, Michael Heinz, CEO of BASF Corporation, said the Germany-headquartered company is demonstrating its commitment to meeting customers’ needs while strengthening its foundation for continued growth in the important US market.

Stefan Doerr, senior vice president, Monomers North America, said BASF sees significant growth potential in North American MDI applications, including transportation, automotive, footwear and furniture.

Kicked off in 2018, the expansion project is being implemented in several stages. In a first step, a new MDI synthesis unit went on stream in October 2020, followed in 2021 by the expansion of several existing upstream units.

The third and final phase of the project will add new upstream units and a splitter. Leveraging state-of-the-art technology, the expansion will showcase the highest safety standards combined with advanced digitalization in its operations, BASF said.

Author: Dede Williams, Freelance Journalist