In 2004, Total reorganized its chemical operations and created Arkema, a company based near Paris and publicly traded since 2006. With 137 production sites in Europe, North America and Asia, Arkema has been divided into three business units since 2012: Industrial Specialties, Coating Solutions and High Performance Materials. This split came about after the sale of its vinyl business unit.
In the Industrial Specialties business, Arkema produces a variety of chemical products, such as animal feed, deodorants, hydrogen peroxide for bleaching fabrics and paper pulp, solutions for water treatment, and fluorochemicals used in air conditioners, among others.
The Coating Solutions segment includes a wide range of coating materials, such as water-based, solvent-based, powdered resins and additives for various uses and sectors.
In the High Performance Materials business, the company is divided into four segments: Fluoropolymers (PVDF), Molecular Sieves, Organic Peroxides and Specialty Polyamides, which include market leading brands such as Rilsan® (polyamide 11), Orgasol® and Pebax®.
Rilsan® is a polyamide polymer which stands out for its high performance, providing great hardness and flexibility, as well as exceptional resistance to the action of chemical substances and permeation.
Arkema developed the proprietary Orgasol® process, which produces powder-based additives from three polyamides (PA 6, PA 12 and PA 6/12) under the Orgasol® brand. Its properties include a microporosity of 1 to 20m²/g, a melting temperature range of 140 to 220°C, and low density, which improves resistance to abrasion. Orgasol® additives are applied in a wide variety of sectors, such as the coating of metal plate coils, packaging cans, furniture, flooring, electronic devices, rubber and the graphic sector, among others.
Pebax® is a family of thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) made up of rigid blocks of polyamide and soft blocks of polyether, which gives them great lightness and high energy return. These materials are widely used in sectors that require these characteristics, such as sports, medical and the manufacture of special technical fabrics. In addition, there is currently the option of Pebax® bio, an environmentally friendly variant.