Fortron doubles PPS plant capacity

Fortron Industries, a joint venture of Ticona and Kureha Corp., has expanded its Fortron polyphenylene sulfide (PPS) plant in Wilmington, N.C. to 15,000 metric tons per year, doubling the site's capacity.

Fortron Industries LLC (Wilmington, N.C.), a joint venture of Ticona Engineering Polymers (Florence, Ky.) and Kureha Corporation (Toyko, Japan), has expanded its trademarked Fortron linear polyphenylene sulfide (PPS) plant in Wilmington, N.C., to 15,000 metric tons per year, completing a three-year effort that doubled the capacity of this site. The expansion creates the world's largest PPS plant.

"The expansion will help us retain our industry leadership,"said Ed Hallahan, Fortron technical marketing manager, "and meet the growing demand for PPS worldwide in the electrical, electronics, automotive, aerospace, technical textiles, filtration and many other industrial and consumer markets.”

"The expanded plant is highly efficient and leverages the infrastructure and experienced workforce in place in Wilmington,"said Steve Ridge, interim president, Fortron Industries. "It is also a step forward in PPS production technology that incorporates Kureha's advanced and environmentally friendly 'one unit' process. These investments demonstrate our commitment to anticipating the market need for future supply and to meeting the developing application requirements of our customers.”

PPS is a high-performance material used in demanding applications. It offers excellent chemical and thermal resistance, high hardness, rigidity and dimensional stability, and low creep and moisture absorption. It is often used instead of metals and thermosets in such applications as: auto pumps, valves, fuel rails and power trains; electronic connectors, plugs, switches and circuit boards; structural and non-structural aircraft components; and heater grilles, impellers, conveyors, power tools, microwave elements and other industrial uses.