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Composites Industry News

News for June 2006


Australian Aerospace Pledges Major Investment

25th June 2006 0 comments

Australian Aerospace is planning further major expansion of the Australian helicopter industry, following the Federal Government’s decision to buy an additional 34 MRH-90 helicopters under the Air9000 program. The decision to buy the extra helicopters comes less than two years after the Federal Government ordered the first 12 MRH-90s as additional troop lift helicopters for the Army. Together, the MRH-90 contracts will generate 400 highly skilled jobs in this country and will inject $1.1 billion into the Australian economy. Production of the MRH-90s – which includes a number of significant composite structures – will now be stepped up at Australian Aerospace’s Brisbane plant and through-life support services also will take place in Australia. Australian Aerospace recently announced plans for a $15 million state-of-the-art composite component manufacturing plant in Queensland, creating more than 60 new jobs and bringing the latest helicopter technology to Australia. Australian Aerospace CEO, Joseph Saporito, said the decision creates the prospect of Australia becoming more involved in the global helicopter supply chain, more exports from Australia, more jobs, the development of new skills in the latest composite fibre manufacturing and construction techniques and more investment by Australian Aerospace.

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Amiantit Joint Venture Wins Contracts in India

25th June 2006 0 comments

Amiantit Fiberglass Industries India, Saudi Arabian Amiantit Company’s joint venture with the Salgaocar Group of Goa, is forecasting a record 90 percent growth in sales for 2006 as the manufacturing facility steps up production to meet increasing demand from India’s booming industrial sector. Orders from two of India’s leading oil refineries highlight the type of large scale contracts that the company is winning. In March it completed a $6.5 million contract from Essar Oil for engineering, supply and installation supervision of glass reinforced plastic (GRP) pipes for the sea water intake and outfall system at its upcoming refinery in Vadinar, Gujarat. The project started in October 2005 and was finished to the client’s satisfaction in only six months. This has been followed by an even bigger order from India’s largest petrochemicals and refining company which specified Amiantit GRP pipes for its sea water intake and outfall system. Worth $10 million, this supply contract is for a complete system and is to be completed within 2006. In addition, an order valued at $2.5 million for GRP intake pipes for a 2×125 MW power plant has been received. The company has also been awarded new orders worth $3.5 million for the supply of double wall GRP underground fuel storage tanks to Dutch oil major, Shell India which has a license to open 2,000 retail outlets. Amiantit say that their Goa plant is the world’s biggest manufacturer of GRP single and double wall storage tanks and previously received the world’s largest ever order for 5,000 single wall GRP underground fuel storage tanks from Reliance, the first 2000 of which were delivered in the record time of only nine months. The plant was commissioned in December 2003.

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Victrex Opens Asia Innovation and Technology Centre in Shanghai

25th June 2006 0 comments

Victrex has opened its Asia Innovation and Technology Center (AITC) in Shanghai to provide customers with expertise and support in materials specification, testing, research and application development. Located in the Xinzhuang Industry Park, Phase I of the AITC complex is a state-of-the-art, US$2.5 million, 2,000 sq m facility to address the needs of customers in the region. Local-language staff, including chemical analysis and formulation engineering specialists, will be able to support customers seeking to successfully develop and launch Victrex PEEK products, with just-in-time-delivery of existing or developmental products and technical support in areas such as tooling & prototyping. ”We are actively expanding the markets for Victrex PEEK polymer through marketing, customer-focused service, and commitment to product quality. The new AITC will enable us to work more closely with our customers and end-users in the region, ensuring that we help to develop new markets, applications and processing methods for Victrex PEEK polymer,” said Richard Okupniak, General Manager of Victrex, Asia Pacific. “We expect that, very quickly, our customers in the region will come to view the AITC as an extension of their in-house development resources. It’s why we called it the AITC, because we wanted to set an expectation for ourselves and our customers that we will seek to solve their issues with new ways of thinking and cooperating together. At Victrex, we have always worked in close collaboration with our customers, assisting them to create innovative and differentiated end-products. We are proud of our track record in this area, and last year helped to commercialize 475 new applications. In real terms, this means that with our assistance, our customers have been able to successfully introduce high-performance, high-quality products into their chosen markets.”

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DSM to Introduce Conductive EcoBulk Containers

25th June 2006 0 comments

DSM Composite Resins has become the first resin producer to ship its bulk resin in Schütz conductive IBCs (Intermediate Bulk Containers). The ECOBULK container is certified according to the safety standard CENELEC TR 50404: 2003 for use in Ex-Zones 1 + 2. Electrostatic charges are dissipated through the conductive outer layer and the permeation of styrene is also substantially reduced meaning less odour, improved resin consistency and storage stability. “As European market leader in UP resins, we have a responsibility to ensure that not only our products but also the storage and handling of our products meet the highest standards for safety and environmental impact”, says Steef Bouwmeester, Demand Chain Manager for DSM Composite Resins. “We have worked closely with Schütz in the testing of these containers so that our UP resin customers will benefit today from what will no doubt become the industry standard for IBCs. New labeling will clearly differentiate the new conductive EcoBulk MX-EX-EV containers from the previous MX models.”

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Dow Raises Specialty Acrylic Monomer Prices

25th June 2006 0 comments

Dow has announced price increases for two of its specialty acrylic monomer products, hydroxyethyl acrylate (HEA) and hydroxypropyl acrylate (HPA). From July 1, 2006 Dow will increase prices for these monomers by $0.05 per pound in North America and Latin America; by 90 Euro per metric ton in Europe, Middle East and Africa.

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LM Glasfiber Secures Global Blade Contract with Gamesa Eólica

25th June 2006 0 comments

LM Glasfiber has concluded a long-term strategic supply agreement with Gamesa Eólica., one of the world’s largest wind turbine manufacturers. Under the three year supply agreement, LM Glasfiber will supply Gamesa Eólica with blades custom-designed for the 2 MW Gamesa G87 wind turbine from factories in Spain and the USA. The agreement will see LM Glasfiber produce over 1,000 MW of blades for Gamesa Eólica. The agreement will be followed by an expansion of LM Glasfiber’s manufacturing facilities in the USA. Production is scheduled to begin in the second half of 2006. Søren F. Knudsen, Sales and Marketing Director of LM Glasfiber, said: “”This is an exciting development for LM Glasfiber and we look forward to working closely with Gamesa Eólica to assist them in their ambition for a global presence. We’ve been engaged in design and production discussions with Gamesa for some time, so the conclusion of these discussions by the signing of a long-term agreement is excellent news. The supply agreement increases our long term order visibility. We are also pleased to exploit our expertise and know-how. For Gamesa, it provides a valuable, exploitation of LM Glasfiber’s technical capabilities and global reach.’’

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Maccaferri Group Acquire Linear Composites

25th June 2006 0 comments

The Maccaferri Group of Bologna, Italy, has acquired a 100% shareholding in Linear Composites, the UK manufacturer of geosynthetics and fibre reinforced products used in civil engineering, industrial and military applications. Linear Composites Ltd, based in Oakworth, West Yorkshire, has been owned by JWH Group Ltd since 1989. This acquisition has been undertaken to strengthen the Maccaferri Group’s position in providing advanced solutions in the field of civil engineering and to enhance the Group’s diversification strategy, aimed at strengthening its position in key niche markets as well as entering new market sectors that have significant growth potential.

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Techfab and Altusgroup Tour 9 US Cities to Promote Carbon Fibre Reinforcement

25th June 2006 0 comments

AltusGroup and TechFab have completed their “Precast on a Diet” tour, a nine-city US Tour that continued the education and outreach advancement of their carbon fibre reinforcement for use in precast concrete in North America.

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New Sewer Culvert Features Large Composite Pipe

25th June 2006 0 comments

An ingenious combination of old concrete and new fibre-reinforced polymer (FRP) composite saved precious time while preventing a potentially serious wastewater problem in metropolitan Denver.

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