Issue: Jul 2012


Kraton Performance Polymers and TNK Bitumen Turbocharge New Moscow Raceway



Kraton(TM) D1192 and TNK Alfabit Deliver Winning Pavement Solution

by Rob White

Kraton Performance Polymers, Inc. (NYSE: KRA), a leading global producer of styrenic block copolymers or SBCs, and TNK Bitumen Performance, a unit of TNK-BP, a leading Russian oil company and producer of TNK Alfabit, a polymer-modified bitumen, are pleased to announce the successful pavement of the first-ever, Russian circuit Moscow Raceway, a multifunctional raceway circuit, located 77 kilometers from Moscow along the Novorizhsky Highway.

According to Raceway officials, the new track meets the highest requirements of international circuits and recently qualified for FIA grade 1T, which will enable the Moscow Raceway to host competitions of any level from National Cup to international automotive and motorcycling championships. As such, the design of the asphalt mix was very specific, which required selection of the right aggregates and asphalt binder to meet performance needs.

"Kraton scientists in Amsterdam and the TNK Bitumen team worked closely together to develop the ideal TNK Alfabit binder formulation using Kraton D1192, which is one of the most technologically-advanced and user-friendly polymer options for use in the manufacture of modified binder," said Marek Kowalczyk, Sales Manager Central Eastern Europe, Kraton Polymers. "Kraton D1192 offers enhanced polymer compatibility, and lower modified asphalt viscosity. Its durability and resistance to aging result in high pavement quality that we believe will stand up to Moscow's regional climate of harsh winters and hot summers," he concluded.

Binder is a major component of asphalt road construction and a critical element in durability, and therefore the safety of race cars. Kraton D1192 makes asphalt more elastic, which helps avoid cracks in the winter and ruts in the summer. It also enhances overall mechanical pavement properties not only for road coverings, but also for airport runways.

"TNK Alfabit increases the guaranteed service life of a road from two-three to seven-ten years without interim repairs compared with ordinary binder," said Andrey Chirkin, PU leader of TNK Bitumen, TNK-BP. The World Series by Renault official opening of the Moscow Raceway was July 15, 2012.

About Kraton Polymers

Kraton Performance Polymers, Inc., through its operating subsidiary Kraton Polymers LLC and its subsidiaries, is a leading global producer of engineered polymers and styrenic block copolymers ("SBCs"), a family of products whose chemistry was pioneered by us almost fifty years ago. SBCs are highly-engineered thermoplastic elastomers, which enhance the performance of numerous products by delivering a variety of attributes, including greater flexibility, resilience, strength, durability and processability. Our polymers are used in a wide range of applications, including adhesives, coatings, consumer and personal care products, sealants and lubricants, and medical, packaging, automotive, paving, roofing and footwear products. We offer our products to a diverse group of more than 800 customers in over 60 countries worldwide. The company manufactures products at five plants globally, including the flagship plant in Belpre, Ohio, as well as plants in Germany, France and Brazil, and a joint venture plant operated in Japan.

About TNK- BP

TNK-BP is a leading Russian oil company and is among the top ten privately-owned oil companies in the world in terms of crude oil production. The company was formed in 2003 as a result of the merger of BP's Russian oil and gas assets and the oil and gas assets of Alfa, Access/Renova group (AAR). BP and AAR each own 50% of TNK-BP. The shareholders of TNK-BP also own close to 50% of Slavneft, a vertically integrated Russian oil company. TNK-BP is a vertically integrated oil company with a diversified upstream and downstream portfolio in Russia and Ukraine. The company's upstream operations are located primarily in West Siberia (Khanty-Mansiysk and Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Districts, Tyumen Region), East Siberia (Irkutsk Region), and Volga-Urals (Orenburg Region). In 2010 the company produced on average 1.74 mboed (excluding its 50% share in Slavneft).''

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