Patent Granted for Kaolin to HPA Production Process
- Patent granted to Altech for its kaolin to HPA production process
- Affords protection to Altech and its unique 8 step production method
- Altech now in a strong position to defend its intellectual property rights
The granted patent covers the production of alumina from all types aluminous clay including kaolin, using hydrochloric acid and includes the following steps:
1. treating kaolin or aluminous material to reduce particle size and increase the alumina content;
2. calcining the kaolin or aluminous material;
3. leaching the aluminous material with hydrochloric acid;
4. solid liquid separation to provide a pregnant liquor;
5. crystallising aluminium chloride hexahydrate by adding hydrogen chloride gas;
6. precipitating and separation of aluminium chloride hexahydrate;
7. dissolving the aluminium chloride hexahydrate in water and repeating the crystallisation process; and
8. roasting and calcining aluminium chloride hexahydrate to provide alumina.
The grant of the patent acknowledges that Altech's process for producing HPA from aluminous material such as kaolin is unique. Other potential new entrants into the HPA industry that have publicised the proposed use of a process similar to Altech's for the production of HPA from kaolin, will need to take extreme care not to breach the Company's patent.
Altech Chemicals managing director Iggy Tan said, "The journey to patent grant was quite arduous. We commenced the process in 2014 and have now received the Certificate of Grant - 4 years later. The patent will help protect the Company's unique HPA production process and the technology that we have developed.
Over the past 18 months it has been quite frustrating to read a number public announcements from other companies aiming to be HPA producers that have included HPA process flow diagrams that appeared to be blatant copies of Altech's process - some even using the same unique icons developed by the Company. Now that this patent is granted, Altech is in strong position to defend its intellectual property rights with the assistance of WRAYS, our patent attorney", he said.
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About Altech Chemicals Ltd
HPA is a high-value, high margin and highly demanded product as it is the critical ingredient required for the production of synthetic sapphire. Synthetic sapphire is used in the manufacture of substrates for LED lights, semiconductor wafers used in the electronics industry, and scratch-resistant sapphire glass used for wristwatch faces, optical windows and smartphone components. There is no substitute for HPA in the manufacture of synthetic sapphire.
Global HPA demand is approximately 25,315tpa (2016) and demand is growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.7% (2016-2024), primarily driven by the growth in worldwide adoption of LEDs. As an energy efficient, longer lasting and lower operating cost form of lighting, LED lighting is replacing the traditional incandescent bulbs.
Altech Chemicals Ltd