Hydrogenated bisphenol A (HBPA) is a saturated dialchol with a cycloaliphatic structure produced by dehydrogenating bisphenol. With a configuration similar to bisphenol A, it is available as a white, flaked material soluble in a wide range of organic solvents. Hydrogenated bisphenol is used as a raw material for various engineering plastics and paints such as epoxy, unsaturated polyester, polycarbonate, polyurethane, polyacrylate, and polysulphone. It is also employed in the preparation of alkyd, polyester, and epoxy resins, in which color stability and improved weatherability are important to ensure lasting quality.
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The aromatic groups of bisphenol A are highly rigid, leading to polymers with mechanical strength and high glass transition temperatures. As a result, bisphenol-based resins and polymers find application in consumer products and medical devices. For instance, bisphenol-derived resins are employed in coil and can coatings in food & beverages containers. Bisphenol-based polycarbonates and their copolymers also produce baby bottles, tableware, and water bottles, apart from applications in casting, laminating, coatings, and fiber production.
In recent years, bisphenol-based resins have been under scrutiny due to health concerns. These polymers are susceptible to degradation and yellowing upon exposure to light, heat, and certain chemicals. With their degradation, BPA and its derivatives can make their way into the content of the food and beverage containers or medical storage devices and subsequently into the body. This is where hydrogenated bisphenol A polymers come into the picture. HBPA polymers exhibit hydrolytic stability, heat & chemical resistance, and low toxicity. Additionally, with upgrading technology, HBPA-based polymers can be formulated for their high flexibility and excellent adhesion.
The market for HBPA can be segmented by type into the epoxy resin-used, unsaturated polyester resin-used, and other varieties. Based on application, the market can be bifurcated into the epoxy resin and unsaturated polyester resin categories. Epoxy resins containing HBPA are employed for making paints, adhesives, a variety of protective coatings, as well as electrical laminates for printed circuit boards (PCBs). Cured epoxy resin offers protective liners on the inside of cans used for packing foods and beverages to maintain their quality. Because of a combination of desirable properties such as toughness, chemical resistance, and adhesion, HBPA is also used in protective coatings.
In terms of regional outlook, Asia Pacific dominated the global HBPA market, accounting for a share of over 50% in the total consumption in 2015. It represents a majorly important market for the HBPA industry, mainly driven by emerging economies such as China and India. The overall HBPA market is propelled by increasing demand from key end-user industries such as automobiles, construction, can manufacturing, and electrical & electronics. However, volatile crude oil prices have remained a major concern for manufacturers of HBPA and they may act as a restraint.
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Key players operating in the global Hydrogenated bisphenol A market include Maruzen Petrochemical, New Japan Chemical, Way Pharm, Milliken Chemical, Avera Chemicals Inc. Yangzhou Baohua Chemical Technology Development Co.,Ltd., and Puyang Huicheng Electronic Materials.