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One of the nine basic products of the chemical industry——xylene

Oct 31, 2023

As a basic chemical raw material, xylene is widely used, involving all walks of life such as: paint, ink, cleaning, synthesis and so on. Most of them are used in coating, resin, dye, ink and other industries as solvents; Used in medicine, explosives, pesticides and other industries as synthetic monomer or solvent; It can also be used as a high-octane gasoline component and is an important raw material for organic chemical industry. It can also be used to remove asphalt from the car body. The pathology department of the hospital is mainly used for the transparency and dewaxing of tissues and sections.

Xylene has three isomers, namely o-xylene, m-xylene and p-xylene, which have similar physical and chemical properties. The xylene that we come into contact with in our work is actually “mixed xylene”, that is, a mixture of several substances, in addition to the three isomers mentioned above, there is another substance called “ethyl benzene”.

O-xylene produces phthalic anhydride, which is the raw material for manufacturing plasticizers, alkyd resins, unsaturated polyester resins, etc. Most of the m-xylene isomerized to p-xylene, can also be oxidized to m-phthalic acid, instead of phthalic anhydride as the raw material of unsaturated polyester and alkyd resin. The largest amount of xylene is p-xylene (PX), p-xylene oxidation to produce terephthalic acid (PTA), esterified by ethylene glycol (EG) to ethylene terephthalate (PET), which is the raw material for the production of polyester fiber and film.

PX is also used to blend gasoline or as a solvent and as a raw material for the production of pharmaceutical intermediates, fragrances, inks, etc. Therefore, the strength of the oil market has a great impact on the PX market.

At present, China’s paraxylene production plants are mainly built in 2019, so they have absorbed the dividends of technological progress to a greater extent.

Now, among the paraxylene installations in China, large installations of more than 1 million tons/year account for 84%. These large-scale, integrated new units have greatly reduced the domestic production cost of paraxylene, and also ensured that the domestic paraxylene capacity utilization rate can remain high under the current global shortage of aromatics raw materials.