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Materials Science

Our innovative technologies and sophisticated chemistries provide cutting-edge and environmentally-sustainable solutions

Humble Beginnings

Our first products were soap and candles, among the basic necessities in the early 19th century. From those humble beginnings, PQ Corporation has grown into a global company with a presence on six continents. Yet we haven’t strayed far from our original vision to advance living standards to create a cleaner, safer world. We know that future generations are counting on us to stick to our vision. We intend to use our scientific talents and our innovative spirit to do our part to ensure that we are good citizens of the world.

We Take Pride in Our Scientists’ Achievements

Our scientists are part of a unique, diverse community where collaboration and complementary skill sets are found across the spectrum. Our developmental facilities are state-of-the-art and our scientists and engineers are arguably among the best in their craft. They can handle the most complex customer challenges, and, with dedication, achieve one of the best lab → pilot → commercial-scale timelines in the industry.

“One of the most rewarding aspects of my job is to see the catalytic materials we develop being deployed on vehicles to help provide clean air for people around the world.”

-Bjorn Moden, Research Manager, Environmental Catalysts and Services

“I find satisfaction in my job knowing that the little things I do here now are capable of becoming great things in the future.”

-Nick Fusco, Senior Technician, Environmental Catalysts and Services

Innovation meets Science

Our deep understanding of chemistry and use of state-of-the-art techniques allow us to continually develop new material structures and properties in response to the evolving needs of our customers. The chemistries we practice modify the most abundant materials in the Earth’s crust (i.e. silicon dioxide and aluminum oxide) at a nano-scale to create novel functional materials. We’d like to share some historical accomplishments along with planned future developments:

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Developed catalysts that produce light weight polymers which reduce carbon emissions.

Commercialized catalysts that were integral to the success of processes that twice won the Kirkpatrick Chemical Engineering Achievement Award given by Chemical Engineering magazine.

Developed USP grade Epsom salt for personal care.

Created, scaled up and manufactured a range of Fe-zeolites and Cu-zeolites for vehicle emission control applications.

We are developing catalysts to make fuels and chemicals from alternative feedstocks (e.g., biomass) that can be used instead of more traditional sources.

Pioneered VISIGUN ®, SPEEDBEADER ® and ULTRAGUARD ® innovative technologies to apply retroreflective particles uniformly to horizontal and vertical traffic paint.

We are creating next-generation pavement marking systems that are brighter, more durable and easier to see, day or night.

We are also reaching into new applications by developing materials that are effective antibacterial agents to promote faster healing of wounds, odor control in fabrics, and safer packaging for food and medical equipment.

We are also developing creating concepts to see how pavement marking systems can someday be integrated with autonomous vehicles.

Developed catalyst that converts bio waste into valuable fuels or chemicals.

Invented a now patented process to make silica gel products used to produce high performance polymers.

We are developing enhanced filtration aids for removal of lead in drinking water for safer, cleaner water.

Created ECOCERT-certified colored inorganic granules which are used to replace polyethylene beads in many consumer products, reducing plastic contamination of water sources.

Provided high-purity sulfur derivatives that are critical to the production of nylons, automobile batteries and metals production

Developed environmentally-friendly water softening systems for laundry and automatic dishwashing detergents to replace phosphates.