Sasol today announced the construction of a purified tri-ethyl aluminum (TEAL) production unit at its Sasol Olefins & Surfactants (O&S) plant in Brunsbüttel, Germany. The facility, with an initial annual production of a 6 000 tons, is expected to go on stream early 2012.

Sasol O&S is the world's largest producer of tri-ethyl aluminum during the production of alcohols at its Ziegler unit in Brunsbüttel, Germany and Lake Charles, LA, USA. The unit will enable Sasol to further benefit from of its existing strong position in the production and captive supply of TEAL. "Leveraging the existing base product allows Sasol to enter this growing market relatively quickly with quality and availability assured", said André de Ruyter, Sasol Group general manager responsible for the chemical businesses. "It will increase our ability to supply customers around the world".

Given Sasol's position in linear alpha-olefins and polymers markets, the company has experience with the use of TEAL in these two application areas. Sasol has also signed a cooperation agreement with a leading gas-phase polypropylene technology provider to qualify the application of Sasol's TEAL in their sensitive production process. "With its many years of experience in the handling of TEAL Sasol is able to ensure rigorous adherence to all safety requirements along the entire supply chain," said Fleetwood Grobler, Managing Director of Sasol O&S. "It also ensures the safe and reliable supply of a high quality, key co-catalyst over long distances to customers world-wide".

Since the new plant will only utilise a small portion of available Ziegler plant resources, Sasol remains well positioned to develop additional capacity, to meet future market demands.

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