Koppers core products are the foundation of a complex and diversified value chain. Koppers people continually challenge themselves to capture new opportunities to provide solutions to the evolving needs of customers. This approach expanded with the August 2014 acquisition of Performance Chemicals, a longtime provider of innovative products, trainings, technical support and developing health and safety best practices for customers.
Environmental Benefits of MicroPro® Technology
Koppers Performance Chemicals MicroPro® represents a revolution in pressure treating wood for decks, fences, landscaping and general construction uses. Using micronized copper preservatives, MicroPro® pressure treated wood protects against termite damage and fungal decay and has significantly improved corrosion performance.1 Wood products treated with the MicroPro® process release 90 to 99 percent less copper than standard treated wood products in ground-contact and aquatic applications.2
MicroPro® treated wood products have received certification under Scientific Certification Systems' Environmentally Preferable Product program, the first wood preservative process to receive this certification. Certification was based on a Life-Cycle Assessment in compliance with ISO standards 14044 and 14025.3
Wood treated with MicroPro® technology requires replacement far less often than untreated wood, which means that much less wood is needed from forestlands.4
Researching New Materials at Koppers Global Technology Center
Researchers at the Koppers Global Technology Center (KGTC) create and test new forms of carbon pitch and other chemical products, both to extend our product line into new uses and markets, and at the request of customers. Located at the University of Pittsburgh Applied Research Center, KGTC—often in collaboration with outside entities—provides Koppers with key laboratory research capabilities and access to a local talent pool with the chemical engineering skills essential to our growth.
Extending Crosstie Lifespan with Borate Treatment
Railroads have long used creosote-treated crossties to enhance the durability of their infrastructure. While creosote protects wood from external environmental elements, internal degradation from rot and insect damage has limited the lifespan of creosote-treated ties in high-decay zones. Koppers customers—particularly those located in humid high-decay zones—have responded positively to how dual-treated borate and creosote products, as approved by the American Wood Protection Association, address these issues.
- 1 http://www.koppersperformancechemicals.com/micropro/
- 2 http://www.koppersperformancechemicals.com/pdfgallery/pdfs/mp-lw-construction-product-spec-guide.pdf
- 3 http://www.koppersperformancechemicals.com/pdfgallery/pdfs/mp-lw-construction-product-spec-guide.pdf
- 4 Conversation with Gary Converse 160415