Cristal serves the Ziegler Natta catalyst market globally through the sale and distribution of high purity titanium chemicals. Due to the high purity of our titanium tetrachloride, it has proven over the years its ability to produce catalysts with very high activity.
Ziegler Natta Catalysts were originally developed by the work of Karl Ziegler in 1953. Ziegler discovered that when heating ethylene and triethyl aluminum there was complete conversion of the ethylene monomer to the dimer, 1-butene. The first full-scale, low pressure high density polyethylene plant was erected by Hoechst AG in 1955. The catalyst was derived from triethyl aluminum and titanium tetrachloride.
Ziegler's work was the basis for the future studies done by Giulio Natta. Natta used Ziegler's catalyst and refined it to produce a variety of long chain polymers of hydrocarbons from olefins such as ethylene and butadiene. The resulting products are now widely used as plastics, fibers, rubbers and films.
As in all industries there have been advancements since the first Ziegler Natta catalysts. The most recent has been the development of metallocene catalysts. These catalysts are generally formed with a metal center (usually a transition metal) surrounded by two cyclopentdienyl rings. Whereas a variety of metals can be used in these catalysts, the most common are zirconium or titanium. Cristal is prepared to service this industry with our high purity titanium tetrachloride.