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Carbon & Coating Solutions

Koppers Carbon Materials and Chemicals (CMC) team upcycles waste streams generated from other industries into critical production feedstocks and manufactures inputs for essential, everyday products.

Our carbon materials and chemicals are vital to the production of manufactured goods necessary for modern life.

Our carbon materials and chemicals are critical to the production of a variety of manufactured goods. Our carbon products are required to make primary aluminum and recycled steel, and our chemicals are used to make plastics, resins, treated wood, and rubber products which go into everything ranging from electric vehicles to medical devices.
We also have patents pending relating to enhanced carbon products and coating solutions that will be used in the emerging global electric vehicle (EV) and lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery markets, raising the potential for enhanced, more energy-efficient electrochemical performance and extended battery life. This aligns with Koppers commitment to sustainability and innovation of higher value carbon products.
Koppers Carbon Products
Vital to the production of various manufactured goods, Koppers Carbon Materials and Chemicals also help increase the durability and extend the life of products such as railroad ties, utility and transmission poles, and marine pilings.
Enhanced Carbon Products
Our enhanced carbon product advancements reflect our commitment to expanding our knowledge, understanding, and the practical applications of breakthrough concepts to the benefit of customers and communities worldwide. Our low-impurity carbon pitch will enhance the life of lithium-ion batteries and eliminate the need for industrial solvents. Koppers carbon pitch also serves as an excellent foundation for coal tar carbon fiber and other carbon artifacts.
Pitch Products
Carbon pitch, the main product derived from coal tar distillation, is used as a binding agent in the production of carbon anodes for primary aluminum smelters, and graphite electrodes for electric arc furnace steel producers. In fact, primary aluminum cannot be made without carbon pitch, and scrap steel cannot be recycled without carbon pitch. Koppers is a leading supplier of carbon pitch to the aluminum industry, helping smelters to produce this vital metal efficiently and economically.
Our refined tar product is a complex mixture of high-boiling organic compounds manufactured during the selective distillation of crude coke-oven tar to form a weather-protective, solvent-resistant seal coating for asphalt pavement.
A supplemental alternative to coal tar pitch, our petroleum pitch product is mainly used as an additive to coal tar pitch for the production of hybrid pitch, which is essential in making anodes in the aluminum industry. This product is available with high-carbon and low-PAH content, and in different grades to meet various applications and contribute to greater product consistency.
Distillates
A naturally derived wood preservative with long-term durability, creosote is economical, reliable, and sustainable. Using creosote to treat railroad ties and utility poles not only extends their service life by up to 40 years—it also ultimately helps to reduce deforestation by preserving natural carbon stores and increasing the reliability of wood products. It also carries the added circular benefit of retaining carbon captured in the wood through photosynthesis and preventing its release into the atmosphere.
Chemicals
Primarily used for the production of phthalic anhydride, naphthalene is derived from coal tar. Major end-use markets for phthalic anhydride include phthalate plasticizers, polyester resins, and alkyd resins for coating applications, dye intermediates, and pigments as well as polyester polyols and flame-retardants. Other end-uses include sulfonates used in certain concrete additives and drywall. We serve our global customers from our production facilities in Stickney, Illinois, Nyborg, Denmark, and Mayfield, Australia. Our Stickney facility is the largest naphthalene-producing facility in North America.

Koppers Australia

We repurpose coal tar from Australian steelworks to produce coal tar pitch, carbon black feedstock, naphthalene, and creosote oil—essential to our Australian and international customers.

Our Products
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Wood Enhancement

Wood Enhancement  

Preservative technology for pressure-treated lumber used in building, remodeling, and more.

Railroad

Railroad  

Pressure-treated wood serving the railroad industry.

Utility & Industrial

Utility & Industrial  

Pressure-treated wood for utility, foundation, and construction infrastructure.