Butachimie is a joint venture between US nylon specialist Invista and Solvay, a Belgian producer of specialty chemicals that is the world’s largest producer of polyamide 6.6. The company’s headquarters are in the small town of Chalampé in the Haut-Rhin department in France. Located on the Upper Rhine, at the Alsace border, Butachimie operates a plant that primarily makes nylon salts and adipodinitrile (ADN). The imposing plant covers an area of 125 ha and employs some 1,000 people. It is the largest production plant of its kind in Europe.
ADN is an intermediate used to make various polyamide 6.6 products. Typical end products are technical fibers and fabrics known by brand names such as Perlon, Cordura, and Kevlar, as well as Nylon. Polyamide 6.6 is also processed into pellets and is used to make thermoplastic injection moldings. In these applications, polyamide 6.6 is valued as a strong, durable material with high resistance to organic solvents.