The German plant contractor Zimmer has developed two cellulosic fibres processes that overcome the environmental problems with viscose production. The Alceru process is designed for new installations and produces a high tenacity fibre which will compete with the Lyocell fibres produced by Courtaulds and Lenzing. The process is described in detail. The Carbacell process is aimed at the revamp of old viscose plants, and this process is also described in detail. Akzo Nobel and Courtaulds have announced that they are to carry out a feasibility study for a 5,000tpy Lyocell cellulosic fibre plant in Europe. The market potential for cellulosic fibres is considerable with cotton production unable to meet the increase in demand. Estimates indicate cellulosic fibres could substitute 7.5% of cotton demand by 2010.
Anon: Eur. Chem. News, vol. 67, no. 1760, 14-20 Apr. 1997, p. 27 (P)
Carbacell was the CS2-free cellulose carbamate route to low environmental impact rayon fibres which could be made on viscose equipment. It required a major commitment by a pulp producer to make the cellulose carbamate pulp and this did not materialise. Alceru was piloted at TITK and acquired by Lenzing. Newcell - the lyocell filament process - remains to be commercialised.