The planning, development and construction of the new carbon nanotube plant will cost Bayer about €22 million.

Bayer’s Baytubes® multi-wall carbon nanotubes are typically used in a polymer matrix or in metal systems to produce tough, strong, lightweight materials. The company says the product can be used in a broad spectrum of applications, such as rotor blades for wind turbines, transport containers and sports equipment.

A pilot plant with an annual capacity of 60 tons has been in operation in Laufenburg, Germany, since 2007. Production involves a catalytic process in which the carbon nanotubes are obtained from a carbon-containing gas at elevated temperature in a reactor.

Bayer MaterialScience LLC recently obtained regulatory approval from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to sell Baytubes in the USA. The approval covers the Baytubes C 150 P and HP grades that are currently produced in the Laufenburg plant.