- Caprolactam is an
organic compound which is a lactam of 6-aminohexanoic acid (e-aminohexanoic
acid, aminocaproic acid).
- Caprolactam is
produced as clear liquid form and as a crystalline form.
- Caprolactam occurs as
white, hygroscopic flakes or crystals with a distinctive odour.
- Caprolactam is soluble
in water, cyclohexane, chlorinated hydrocarbons.
- There are several
different processes for producing caprolactam[1, 2], such as the
DSM/HPO method, BASF-NO reduction method, and the SNIA toluene
- Caprolactam is mostly
produced from benzene through three intermediates; cyclohexane,
cyclohexanone and cyclohexanone oxime.
- Most of the
caprolactam is synthesised from cyclohexanone via an oximation
process using hydroxylammonium sulfate followed by catalytic
rearrangement using the Beckmann rearrangement process step.
- The recovery process
of caprolactam from the reaction mixture starts with
neutralization, which results in the formation of a crude
caprolactam top phase and an aqueous ammonium sulfate layer.
- The crude caprolactam
layer is extracted with an organic solvent in the so-called
forward extraction, which is followed by back-extraction with
- The primary industrial
use of caprolactam is as a monomer in the production of nylon-6.
- Caprolactam is a raw
material (monomer) for the polyamide-6 production with a wide
application in the artificial fibre industry as well as a
structural material in the motorization and electrotechnics
- Small amounts of
caprolactam are also used in cross-linking for polyurethanes and
in the synthesis of lysine.
- Anionic polymerization
of e-caprolactam (CL) in an organic solvent is to obtain
functional polyamide-6 nanoparticles in miniemulsion technique.
- The Polymerisation of
Caprolactam together with tha catalyst and stabilizer was
preferably carried out in a one stage technology using VK tube
caprolactam technology is based on the key intermediate
cyclohexanone, which is usually produced by the oxidation of
cyclohexane, but can also be made from phenol or toluene.
- The nylon fibres
market is mature at around 1%/year growth while demand for
engineering resins is much more robust at 4-5%/year. Overall
long-term global growth for caprolactam is estimated in the range
- Global trade in
caprolactam will decrease as Asia becomes more self-sufficient.
- The long-term average
caprolactam market price is used as the yardstick for evaluating
and comparing the economic feasibility of building a new
- The outlook for the
caprolactam industry is about average for a mature commodity
chemical in the recovering economy.
- China is expected to
continue to be an importer of caprolactam. China is expected to be
able to produce 660,000 tonnes/year but with demand estimated at
1.0-1.1m tonnes, imports of 400,000-500,000 tonnes will still be
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