Our Markets

PQ’s performance chemicals are crucial ingredients and process aids in a diverse set of industrial and consumer products. Our performance chemicals act as cleaning and whitening agents in toothpaste, create a “matted” finish on surface coatings and remove impurities from beer and edible oils.

Paints & Coatings

Paints & Coatings is a growing end market for PQ. Silicas are used as matting agent in numerous coatings on substrates such as wood, coil and leather. Our products are effective in low VOC formulations, like radiation curable coatings, a key technology adopted by leading coating suppliers to increase their and their customers sustainability. Sodium, Potassium and Lithium silicates are used in masonry coatings to protect buildings, in anticorrosive coatings for metals, thermal control coatings for space applications and in glass coatings.

PQ is a technical savvy supplier working with leading manufacturers of coatings to innovate into the future.

Products for Paints & Coatings:


Purification is a rapidly evolving and crucial market for improving the environment. In this market, our products primarily act as adsorbents to aid in the clarification, filtration and purification process.

Edible oils like soybean, coconut, olive, avocado and others require low waste purification solutions to meet industry standards, ensuring a consistent feedstock for biofuels. In water treatment, our products help remove heavy metals for safe drinking and processing water. Clean sustainable energy from renewable feedstocks reduces our collective carbon impact. Safe drinking water improves lives around the world every day.

PQ’s handprint, the benefit we provide to our customers’ sustainability through their end products, can be seen now and well into the future.

Products for Purification:

Silica & Chemical Manufacturing

Silica & Chemical Manufacturing is a significant end market globally that covers diverse applications. The primary end market for silicates is the production of synthetic amorphous silicas.

The largest single end use for synthetic silicas is as a functional filter in “Green Tires.” In “Green Tires” silica replaces carbon black to enhance the sustainability of the tire. Silica also increases the strength of the tire and improves fuel economy by reducing rolling resistance while maintaining the grip on the road. Our products are also used to produce high quality catalysts including fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) and hydrocracking (HCC) catalysts for the fuel industry. Sodium silicate is also a feedstock for colloidal silica production, used in many applications including the manufacturing of semiconductors for electronics.

Silicates and silicas have been around for almost 200 years and scientists continue to find new industrial applications every day.

Products for Silicas and Chemical Manufacturing:

Construction & Drilling

Our products are used as binders to hold materials together in briquettes or pellets, adhesives, and high quality environmentally friendly roofing granules. Sodium silicate is used in the production of geopolymers, which can replace Portland Cement, and provide a building material with excellent saltwater resistance and reduce the carbon footprint of construction.

PQ products are not only used in traditional oil drilling but also in the growing geo-thermal market, acting as lubricants for the drill or as a superior plugging product during the closure of wells, mines and tunnels. Tunneling projects use our materials in annular grouting or filling in the space between the tunnel lining and the bore hole to support the structure.

Products for Construction and Drilling:

Personal Care, Nutrition, Food & Beverage

Personal Care, Nutrition, Food & Beverage are markets where you can find PQ products in your everyday use. Cleaning agents for toothpaste and abrasives for lotions, the small particles that scrub and remove debris, are often precipitated silicas. PQ products allow the formulation of toothpastes with a balanced level of abrasion compared to the level of cleaning to maximize the benefits of time spent brushing. Hair Care formulas utilize our products to prepare the hair for color applications at home and in salons.

Spices and powdered beverages, often include our free flow aids to avoid clumping and caking. PQ adsorbents are used in processing beer to remove proteins, in a process called chill-proofing, to increase the clarity and extend the shelf life of the beer. Our products are also used to provide silica and potassium nutrients to plants. They aid the health of livestock as dietary supplements to reduce milk fever. Our products are safe for people, plant and animal consumption.

Products in Personal Care, Nutrition, Food and Beverage:


Cleaning products, such as detergents, often require a builder to enhance cleaning in hard water. We support both household laundry and institutional and industrial cleaners.

PQ products allow end product manufacturers to make environmentally friendly, high-performance products to thoroughly clean a wide variety of surfaces. To optimize cleaning our products can remove calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), manganese (Mn), iron (Fe) and copper (Cu). Our products also optimize the efficiency of cleaning by buffering pH. Silicates can also be used as binders in agglomeration processes to produce granular or powder cleaning products.

Products in Cleaning:

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