Active Minerals Adds Capacity for Attapulgite-Based Performance Additives for Coatings

Active Minerals International (AMI), the world’s largest supplier of high-quality gellant attapulgite for the coatings, adhesives, sealants, and other industries, has announced the company is undertaking process improvements designed to expand capacity. The initiatives, according to president, Dennis C. Parker, are aligned with increasing demand in AMI’s major markets and new developments in international coatings markets.
AMI’s process improvements involve a number of projects from debottlenecking to process efficiencies, such as mill feed automation, process flow changes and enhanced utilization of state-of-the-art manufacturing data management software. In addition, existing classifiers are being upgraded to produce more paint grade products. Longer-term projects, supported by its mining reserves in the area, include expanded drier capacity allowing the company to meet the demands of global markets.
While Parker sites the rate of construction and infrastructure development in emerging
economies as one factor increasing demand for attapulgite, he explains, “the strong interest in Active Minerals by international customers and distributors stems from the fact that paints and coatings professionals, from formulators to chief financial officers, recognize the world has only a handful of foremost authorities in attapulgite technology; and most of them are here at Active Minerals.” AMI’s Director of Global Business Development, Jeffrey B. Carr, along with Parker, is among the individuals recognized as leading authorities in attapulgite. Carr describes additional factors driving demand.
“Min-U-Gel® attapulgite customers are a priority for Active Minerals. We bring the highest quality standards, customer service, and supply chain management practices to bear on customers’ behalf. Our Quincy, Florida attapulgite operation serves our customers with more than 120,000 square feet of storage for bagged product, allowing us to ship from inventory and maintain short lead times, even during the paint market’s busy Spring season. In addition, being one of the top 100 exporters in the U.S. coupled with strong logistic capabilities provides excellent service to our international customers.”
Min-U-Gel thixotropic thickener and suspending agents are produced in a unique manner that makes Active Minerals International’s gelling grade products 10% purer than competing grades of gelling clays. Through a robust ISO 9001 registered Quality Management System and a dynamic continual improvement culture AMI has a well-proven track record of consistent quality and customer satisfaction. “Paint and coatings manufacturers prefer Min-U-Gel products for their ease of use, consistent quality, and superior economy,” said Carr. “They function well as drop-in replacements to competitive products or as partial replacements to other, higher-cost rheology modifiers, like cellulosic fibers.”
Active Minerals lists Min-U-Gel product performance benefits as:
 superior flow and leveling
 syneresis control
 thixotropic thickening with no loss of recovery (fade) under repeated or prolonged shear
 reduced floating and flooding of organic pigments


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