New briefs -- Sept. 9, 2008

Spirit announces Wichita expansion; Arkema increases MEKP prices; Bayer names Joe Ventura business development manager; DSM expands Chinese gelcoat/resin production; LM Glasfiber establishes Danish R&D center; Park names Patrick Crowley president of Nelco; Reichhold names Azelis to cover Nordics; VISTAGY to host webinar Sept. 18.

Spirit AeroSystems (Wichita, Kan.) announced on Aug. 27 that it has selected its Wichita facility as the site where the company will design and manufacture the fuselage for the new Cessna Citation Columbus. Spirit plans to build a new 375,000-sq-ft factory to accommodate the manufacturing and testing of the Columbus fuselage. The facility will also provide additional capacity for existing products and other new programs. The Kansas Department of Commerce and the Greater Wichita Economic Development Coalition (GWEDC) worked closely with Spirit to secure the investment in the new facility. Spirit AeroSystems has expanded production on current airplane programs and won multiple new contracts across the aerospace industry since its formation in June 2005. These new programs include the Gulfstream G650 wing, nacelle and thrust reverser, the Cessna Citation Columbus fuselage and empennage, the Sikorsky CH-53K Helicopter cockpit and cabin, and the Airbus A350 Section 15 and wing fixed leading edge and spar. Over the next five years, Spirit expects to invest approximately $260 million and create an estimated 700 jobs with a projected annual payroll of more than $42 million in the state of Kansas, as the company executes its business plan for these multiple new programs. 

Arkema Inc. (Philadelphia, Pa.) announced on Aug. 29 that it will, effective Sept. 1, 2008, or as contract terms allow, increase the price for all methyl ethyl ketone peroxides (MEKPs) and blends by $0.12/lb.

Bayer MaterialScience LLC (Pitssburgh, Pa.) has announced that Joe Ventura has been appointed business development manager for Bayer’s Baytubes carbon nanotube business in North America. Ventura was previously senior project manager – Construction/Green Technologies at Bayer MaterialScience. The appointment was effective May 1. Ventura is a 36-year veteran of the polymer industry. Prior to joining Bayer MaterialScience in 1998, he worked at various chemical and machinery companies, including Monsanto’s Radiation Dynamics and GE Plastics.

DSM Composite Resins (Schaffhausen, Switzerland) has announced expansion of production of its gelcoats and resin products at its manufacturing facility in Nanjing, China. The plant is owned by Jinling DSM Resins Co. Ltd. (JDR), a joint venture of DSM and its Chinese partner Sinopec, formed in 1992. The firm produces and sells unsaturated polyester resins and gelcoats at its facility in Nanjing.

LM Glasfiber (Lunderskov, Denmark) has announced the establishment of an international Center of Excellence through an agreement with Ris DTU, National Laboratory for Sustainable Energy, in Denmark. Under the agreement, LM Glasfiber will establish an R&D office that is expected to employ researchers by mid-2009. The researchers will be experts in advanced materials technology and aerodynamics.

Park Electrochemical Corp. (Melville, N.Y.) has announced the appointment of Patrick Crowley as president of Nelco Products Pte. Ltd., Park's high-technology electronics circuitry materials and advanced composite materials subsidiary located in Singapore. Crowley also will serve as president of Nelco Technology (Zhuhai FTZ) Ltd., Park's electronics circuitry materials subsidiary located in Zhuhai, China. Crowley will be located in Singapore and will continue to report to Brian Shore, Park's president and CEO. Crowley had been president of Neltec Inc., Park's high-technology circuitry materials business unit located in Tempe, Ariz., since his appointment to that position in August 2005.

Reichhold (Research Triangle Park, N.C.) and Azelis (trading as Broste) have reached an agreement in principle whereby Azelis is appointed exclusive distributor of Reichhold products for the Nordic region (Norway, Finland, Sweden and Denmark).

VISTAGY Inc. (Waltham, Mass.) has announced a Sept. 18 webinar entitled, "Enhance Productivity by Taking a Holistic View of Composite Airframe Development." The webinar is designed to teach how to enhance productivity by developing an optimized composite airframe design faster and cheaper; how to design an aircraft that meets weight and performance standards; how to manage changes quickly and effectively across the development of composite parts and fastened assemblies; how to take an innovative approach to developing airframe fasteners and composite products that takes into account new design and manufacturing methodologies; how to gain a better understanding of the interaction between design and analysis of composite airframe assemblies. Featured speakers are Steve Green, program/project manager at Butler International; John O'Connor, director of product and market strategy at VISTAGY; and Olivier Guillermin, PhD, director of product and market strategy at VISTAGY. The webinar begins at 11 am EDT and lasts 60 minutes. Visit www.vistagy.com/landing/webcast-butler.aspx.