Growth and international expansion
Chemische Werke Hüls GmbH in Marl obtained permission from the Allied administration to resume production of the synthetic rubber Buna, which had been terminated a year earlier by the same authority. The ban had led to many layoffs. The background to the re-granting of permission was the Korean War, which presented a new threat to the UK's natural rubber resources in Asia.
Röhm & Haas GmbH commenced its own production of hydrocyanic acid for the manufacture of monomers at the Darmstadt works. When four years later the French post-war administration authorized the factory at Worms to resume operation, the production of hydrocyanic acid and monomers was transferred there. There have been many extensions to the plant, the latest in 1999.
For the time, Degussa established a pension fund for all employees, known as the Degussa-Pensionskasse. In the same year a general company agreement relating to Christmas bonuses for workers and salaried staff replaced the scheme for one-off annual bonuses dating from 1934. Workers and salaried staff were treated equally from then on. This agreement remained in force until completely new regulations were introduced in 1979.
Chemische Werke Hüls GmbH, founded in 1938 in Marl, became the Chemische Werke Hüls AG. Fifty percent of the shares were held by Chemie-Verwaltungs-AG, to which the former companies of I.G. Farbenindustrie AG belonged, i.e. Bayer, Hoechst and BASF. A further 25 percent of the new Hüls AG was owned by the mining company Hibernia; the remaining 25 percent was held by the Kohleverwertungsgesellschaft (comprising the Gelsenkirchener Bergwerksaktiengesellschaft, Ruhrgas AG and STEAG).
Th. Goldschmidt AG began the construction in Essen of a new surfactant plant, which was completed in 1955. Today this plant is one of the most important at the Essen/Goldschmidtstraße site of Evonik.
In Darmstadt, Röhm & Haas started the production of VISCOPLEX®, which as an additive for engine and hydraulic oils became an important production mainstay of the company. Today nearly all engine oil manufacturers use VISCOPLEX® oil additives. These guarantee better viscous behavior and improved engine lubrication, thus prolonging the intervals between oil changes.
Chemische Werke Hüls AG founded its subsidiary, Bunawerke Hüls GmbH. I.G. Farben's successors Bayer, Hoechst and BASF and acquired a stake in the company. Bayer, in particular, was traditionally highly experienced in rubber synthesis. Thus, by 1990 apart from Hüls, Bayer AG was the only other owner. In 1994 the Leverkusen Group completely took over the Buna business from Hüls AG.
As a result of experiments started in 1947 into the then new material silicone, Th. Goldschmidt AG produced series production silicone products for the first time. These were comparatively simple silicone oils, resins and emulsions, which were mainly used as antifoaming agents, separating agents and impregnating agents. Today these products are important work areas of Evonik Industries AG.
Chemische Werke Hüls AG commissioned power station II. It was the large plant in the world to operate with supercritical steam, i.e. at a pressure of 300 atmospheres. It thus became possible to heat water to 600 degrees Celsius and to achieve a considerably higher level of efficiency in power generation. The power station remains in operation today.
With Tego Tex®, Goldschmidt AG introduced a product to the market, which remained the company's most successful product right up to the 1970s. Tego Tex® was a new type of glue film, which enabled particularly rapid and high quality processing of furniture veneers. The Tego Tex product line was sold to Casco Nobel in 1984.
With Hüls Far East Ltd. in Hong Kong, Chemische Werke Hüls AG set up its foreign sales company
In Essen, Th. Goldschmidt AG introduced an important further development in rail welding in the form of the Goldschmidt alumino-thermic rapid welding process. The new method enabled even busy rail stretches to be welded while rail traffic continued, since the welded sections were ready to be used again after only a few minutes. This represented a considerably more efficient method of working than had previously been available.
With the founding of Atlas-Goldschmidt Italiana S.p.A. in Milan, Goldschmidt AG took its big step in the international arena since the Second World War. The initial aim was to improve capacity to serve the especially important Italian market for surfactants.
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