ESSEN, Germany – On November 16, 2012, Evonik Industries, Essen, Germany, celebrated 50 years of making isophorone chemicals.

The first plant for isophorone production started operation in 1962 at the Herne site of Hibernia, as a predecessor company of Evonik Industries. Discovered as a byproduct of acetone catalysis, isophorone, a solvent, evolved to eventually become one of the company’s core areas of competency. The continued development of the product, combined with the exploration and tapping of new technologies and markets, enabled the company to build an extensive portfolio for applications in a variety of industries.

In June of 2012, Evonik held a groundbreaking ceremony for a new plant in Shanghai, China, its fifth isophorone production site. Products from the new facilities, which are scheduled to come on stream in the first quarter of 2014, will primarily serve markets in China and Asia-Pacific.

Isophorone, isophorone diamine, isophorone diisocyanate and their derivatives are important components in the production of coatings, in the growth field of high-performance composites and in chemical synthesis. According to Evonik, more than 80 percent of the isophorone sold to the coatings industry is used in eco-friendly systems.

 Evonik currently manufactures isophorone chemical products in Herne and Marl, Germany, Mobile, AL, and Antwerp, Belgium. The products are marketed under the trademarks of VESTAMIN®, VESTANAT®, VESTAGON® and VESTASOL®