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AGY Launches Wind Energy Initiative and Expands Glass Manufacturing Capacity

  • Friday, 8th October 2004
  • Reading time: about 3 minutes

AGY is to launch a significant product and market development project to provide value for the growing application of composites in wind energy.

The company says the project is specifically targeting high-performance reinforcements for large blades wth AGY Market Development Manager Xavier Gambert being named to lead the project.

“With steady growth in blade installation and a focus on larger and more efficient blade designs, the market is actively seeking new reinforcement materials that exceed the capabilities of today’s fibres,” says Douglas J. Mattscheck, AGY president and chief executive officer.

“Large blades require higher performance materials than the market has readily available today,” says Gambert. “We believe our unique glass and size chemistries will provide the performance needed, and we are actively partnering with current and potential customers to bring these products to the global market.”

In response to continued growth in the use of high-performance glass fibres for composite reinforcement, AGY has launched a multi-phase expansion of its capacity to manufacture S-2 Glass products. When completed in 2005, the company will have increased capacity for S-2 Glass reinforcements by 25 percent.

Considered the standard for high-strength glass fibre reinforcements, S-2 Glass has provided superior performance and quality for a wide variety of end-use applications across the global composites spectrum. AGY has maintained a steady supply of the product to the market and is now taking major steps to increase capacity and insure that this outstanding service and supply security continues.

“We expect the current strong demand for higher performance reinforcements to continue and we are investing in our plants and in our products to insure that we will meet these increasing demands,” says Douglas J. Mattscheck, AGY president and chief executive officer.

In addition to those programs, AGY yesterday revealed plans to install additional capacity at its Huntingdon, Pa. facility that will increase production output by approximately 15 percent for a total capacity increase of 25 percent.

In response to the increased demand for vehicle and personal ballistic protection, AGY has expanded its program of licensing the HJ1 Armour System.

A proprietary hard armour system that utilizes S-2 Glass rovings in composite panels, the HJ1 system has been used with great success in a number of military and commercial armour applications. Among the best known applications are the Humvee used by the United States Army and the CAV-100 composite armoured vehicle used in peacekeeping missions throughout Europe.

“By expanding the licensing availability of the HJ1 system – now available from 17 different sources – we are helping the end users get product to the people who need it more efficiently and more effectively,” says Will Chafin. “Our goal is to enable expanded use of S-2 Glass armour while providing value to the overall supply chain that provides ballistic protection systems.

“We believe that S-2 Glass provides outstanding structural and ballistic performance for a wide range of applications in this market and we want to see the system deployed in the most effective manner,” adds Chafin.

Optimized for ballistic protection, S-2 Glass systems also have a significant load-bearing capability. “HJ1 armor system laminates provide balance among tensile, compressive, stiffness and fatigue properties in structural components,” says Chafin. “With other material systems there is often a trade-off between ballistic and structural properties in a composite laminate. S 2 Glass armor systems solutions provide the opportunity to meet both challenges. Additionally, the HJ1 armor system provides outstanding fire, smoke, and toxicity performance for applications where those threats pose concerns.”

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