specialty chemicals company Lanxess is expanding its compounding facility for
high-tech plastics in Gastonia, North Carolina by adding a second production
line. The company is investing around US $ 15 million for this expansion which
will see the existing capacity double from 20,000 to 40,000 metric tons
annually. Construction for the second line is likely to commence in the second
half of 2014 with production scheduled to begin in early 2016.
Gastonia facility produces the high-tech plastics Durethan (polyamide) and
Pocan (polybutylene terephthalate). These plastics allow automotive engineers
to design lighter-weight plastic components to replace metal parts in cars.
This in turn contributes to fuel efficiency and reduced emissions.
Corporation President and CEO Flemming B. Bjoernslev noted that the United
States is the leading market for high-tech plastics, with the automotive
industry at the forefront. He said that the US automotive industry sales are at
their highest level in almost ten years and by adding the second line in
Gastonia, the company was underlining its ongoing commitment to its customers.
lightweight design can reduce weight by 10 to 50pc, depending on the component.
The growing demand for high-tech plastic applications is being driven by rising
car production coupled with the increasing trend towards more fuel efficient
automobiles. In the United States, the demand for high-tech plastics is
expected to increase by roughly 7pc per year through 2020.
hybrid front ends can be found today in more than 80 car models and in millions
of vehicles around the world. Durethan and Pocan compounds are also being used
in a wide variety of automotive parts such as body parts, oil pans, coolant
pipes, battery housings, steering rods, pedals and pedal brackets.
Picture shows Lanxess
compounding facility for high-tech plastics in Gastonia, North Carolina, USA.
Picture courtesy Lanxess AG