Honeywell Expands Gel-Spun Spectra Fiber Manufacturing

19 October 2001

The Specialty Materials business of Honeywell is expanding production of its Spectra(R) high modulus polyethylene fiber (HMPE). The expansion will provide additional capacity to support an emerging increase in the demand for Spectra(R) fiber and Spectra Shield(R) composites.

Dean Flatt, President and CEO of Specialty Materials, said the expansion would be accomplished in two phases. The Phase I investment of approximately $20 million will include the installation of a new gel-spinning line and additional drawing capacity at the company's Colonial Heights, Virginia, facility. The additional capacity is expected to be available by the end of the third quarter in 2002. ""The new gel-spinning line will be capable of producing a new generation of fibers that will allow our key customers in armor, rope, cut protection, and other segments to enhance performance in their products,"" Flatt said.

The second phase of the expansion, in the initial scoping stage, will encompass the construction of a new HMPE plant. The new plant will be designed with state-of-the-art processing technology and will be targeted to take Spectra(R) fiber properties to a new level. Although the location has not yet been selected, sites in Europe, Asia, and the United States will be considered. Lawrence Bossidy, Honeywell Chairman and CEO said, ""we intend to continue investing aggressively in the high growth businesses of our portfolio like Spectra(R) fiber. This type of investment in our business is an investment in our customers, and we are committed to supporting their growth.""

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