Ethylene Oxide, EO glycols and antifreeze

INEOS Oxide Ethylene Oxide, EO glycol productsEthylene oxide (EO) is an important building block for the preparation of a wide variety of EO derivatives. A major part of the ethylene oxide produced by INEOS Oxide is consumed internally for the production of ethylene glycols. Monoethylene glycol (MEG) is the main constituent in PET and polyester fiber production.

INEOS Oxide is the European leader in the production of both Ethylene Oxide and Ethylene Glycol. We have a total EO capacity of 920 kt per annum spread across three different production units throughout Europe. These units have leading cost economics, due to economies of scale, state-of-the-art technology, strategic locations, etc. This capacity is supplemented with a total MEG capacity of 520 kt pa produced in the same world-class assets.

Ethylene oxide is used as a chemical intermediate for the synthesis of a wide variety of EO derivatives such as Surfactants, Ethanolamines and Glycolethers.

Finally, applications for ethylene glycols (MEG/DEG/TEG) include antifreeze, de-icing agents, lubricants, polyester resins and gas drying agents.

Propylene Oxide and PO glycols

INEOS Oxide Propylene Oxide & PO glycols ProductsPropylene Oxide (PO) is an important building block for the preparation of a wide variety of PO derivatives. A major part of the propylene oxide produced by INEOS Oxide is consumed internally for the production of propylene glycols. Monopropylene glycol (MPG) is the largest volume propylene glycol with MPG US Pharmacopeia (USP) also an important part of our product range.

INEOS Oxide’s produces PO/PG at our Koeln, Germany site, with a total PO capacity of 210 ktpa and a high degree of integration into a larger petrochemical site, including a cracker, INEOS Oxide can ensure a reliable and cost efficient product supply. Just like EO, PO is mainly used as a chemical intermediate for the production of other chemicals such as polyether polyols, propylene glycols, and specialty alkoxylates.

INEOS Oxide’s propylene glycol unit in Koeln has a capacity of 120 ktpa and produces mono-, di- and tripropylene glycols as well as smaller quantities of higher glycols. PO glycols can be found in a wide range of applications ranging from de-icing formulations to paints, inks and pharmaceuticals.


INEOS Oxide Ethanolamines ProductsBy combining a 50 year history of reliability and innovation with one of the world’s largest assets of its type, INEOS Oxide provides its customers with a powerful package of support and commitment in the field of ethanolamines. Our global manufacturing facilities are advantageously located in Plaquemine (USA) on the Louisiana Gulf Coast, and in Lavéra (France) on the Mediterranean.

The ethanolamine product range includes mono-, di- and triethanolamine. A mixture of higher ethanolamines and low freezing grades which are mixtures of the amines with water is also on offer.

Ethanolamines are one of the most versatile members of the EO derivatives family. They are bifunctional molecules containing both amine and alcohol functional groups and are therefore capable of undergoing reactions at both groups. Many of their various industrial applications rely on these features.

Our vast experience with ethanolamines has also resulted in GAS/SPEC gas treating amines business. Going beyond fundamental chemicals supply, INEOS Oxide’s GAS/SPEC offers tailor made solutions and services for treating different gas streams.

Glycol Ethers

INEOS OXIDE INEOS Oxide Glycol Ethers 2INEOS Oxide produces a wide range of ethylene oxide (EO) and propylene oxide (PO) based glycol ethers. EO-based glycol ethers include the methyl, ethyl, isopropyl, and butyl product groups. The propylene glycol ethers offered by INEOS Oxide are produced by reaction of PO with ethanol. For some of these glycol ethers we also produce the corresponding acetate esters.

The production of these low molecular weight EO and PO derivatives is performed on INEOS Oxide’s glycol ether units. These multipurpose plants, capable of producing a wide range of glycol ethers, have a combined capacity of over 200 ktpa.

INEOS Oxide Glycol Ethers 1

Both glycol ethers and their acetate esters combine the solubility characteristics of both ethers and alcohols (or esters) as both functional groups are present in the molecule. Not only are they miscible in water and in most common organic solvents but they also combine powerful dissolving characteristics with low volatility.The production of these low molecular weight EO and PO derivatives is performed on INEOS Oxide’s glycol ether units. These multipurpose plants, capable of producing a wide range of glycol ethers, have a combined capacity of over 200 ktpa.


INESO Oxide Esters ProductsINEOS Oxide is able to offer various Esters to the market. We have butyl acetates and isopropyl acetate formed by reacting acetic acid with an alcohol resulting in the corresponding alcohol ester and water. These are the so called acetate esters. INEOS Oxide is also able to offer several glycol ether acetate esters produced by esterification of the corresponding glycol ethers (butyl glycol and butyldiglycol ether, ethoxypropanol).

With a total annual capacity of 85 kt for acetate esters in Antwerp and 25 kt glycol ether esters in Lavèr, INEOS Oxide is a leading producer in Europe for these chemicals.

Both types of esters are versatile, oxygenated solvents which are primarily used in paints, coatings and inks formulations. They are also widely used in sealants and adhesives, in pharmaceutical applications, in the textile industry, in cleaning formulations and as extraction solvents.


INEOS Oxide Alkoxylates ProductsAlkoxylation is one of the core technologies of INEOS Oxide, with a total capacity of 210 kilo tonnes per annum. Our alkoxylates portfolio includes a broad range of high-quality products based on different types of alcohol initiators and varying proportions of ethylene oxide and/or propylene oxide.

Production flexibility permits us to offer anything from batch-produced niche chemicals to high-volume performance chemicals manufactured via semi-continuous processes. Fine-tuning of our manufacturing processes has enabled us to produce high-quality alkoxylation products, with low residual catalyst and low impurity levels.

INEOS Oxide Alkoxylates Products

In addition to our standard product portfolio, an extensive range of tailor-made products are manufactured in order to meet our customers’ specific end-use requirements. For special product demands, information on applications, or other special requirements please contact the local sales office.

The alkoxylates produced by INEOS Oxide are used in a wide range of applications including: 

  • Agrochemicals
  • Construction chemicals
  • Cosmetics
  • Industrial cleaners
  • Oil and gas processing chemicals
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Superabsorbents
  • Surfactants for detergents and shampoos
  • Synthetic lubricants


INEOS Oxide INEOS Oxo-Alcohols ProductsThrough its 50 % stake in the Oxochimie joint venture, INEOS Oxide is a major European producer of oxo-alcohols. The world-scale production unit in Lavéra (France) has a total capacity of 320 ktpa and produces n-butanol, isobutanol and 2-ethylhexanol.

Most of the produced n-butanol and isobutanol is used internally for the production of other INEOS Oxide products such as butylglycolethers and esters. The 2 ethylhexanol we produce is sold directly into the European market to customers who mainly use it to manufacturing plasticizers, lubricants and other chemical products such as raw materials for paints and coatings.

ENB and VNB norbornenes

INEOS Oxide ENB & VNB norbornenesINEOS Oxide has been at the forefront of Norbornene technology for the last 30 years and is Europe’s sole producer. Our Antwerp production plant with an annual capacity of 24 kt allows us to provide high quality norbornene products to our customers.

ENB is primarily used as the diene monomer in the production of ethylene-propylene-diene monomer (EPDM) rubber.

This synthetic rubber shows superior heat, wear and weather resistance, and is commonly used in applications including:

  • Automotive
  • Cooling system circuit hoses
  • Door and window seals
  • Roofing membranes
  • Pond liners
  • Cable insulation

Finally norbornenes are also used in the flavour and fragrance industry as an intermediate in the preparation of perfume ingredients.