Huntsman is one of the world's largest producers of maleic anhydride, a highly versatile intermediate that makes dissimilar chemistries compatible and improves the durability and value of end products. We are also a major supplier of the catalyst used to manufacture maleic anhydride from butane feedstock. Our continual advancement in maleic anhydride technology has enabled our customers and our own plants to increase production and lower costs.
Major applications for maleic anhydride include the manufacture of unsaturated polyester resins (UPR), which in turn are used in the production of lighter, stronger, fiberglass composites for boats, cars, construction, wind turbine blades and a diverse range of consumer products. It is a key ingredient in the manufacture of copolymers that enable the use of more sustainable raw materials, for example to bind wood fibers into plastic, to inhibit corrosion, create protective coatings for wire and to repel water in sunscreens.
Through conversion to fumaric and malic acids, maleic anhydride is a vital component of gelling agents, flavor enhancers and food preservatives. It is also essential to the production of elastane (Spandex) fibers, artificial sweeteners, paper-sizing, water treatments, hardeners for epoxy curing, hairsprays, pharmaceuticals, agricultural chemicals and motor oil additives.