Shale gas drilling demand prompts Raven to triple capacity in Texas

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Raven Industries Inc. Raven Industries Inc.'s films are used as protective linings in hydraulic fracturing operations.

Raven Industries Inc.’s Engineered Films division has tripled the production capability at its Midland, Texas, facility to help meet demand for its durable geomembrane containment liners.

“We felt swift action was necessary to continue to provide our customers with the quick delivery and quality service they expect from Raven,” said Anthony Schmidt, vice president and general manager of Raven Engineered Films, in a news release.

The liners are used in the drilling process in the Permian Basin and other shale formations across the country. They are used to line pits used in hydraulic fracturing, secondary containment systems, reserve ponds and rig-site pad liners. The liners prevent the escape of brine produced water and other drilling fluids into the surrounding soils and water reserves.

As part of the Midland expansion, new 146-inch-wide-film produced on Raven’s advanced extrusion lamination line in Sioux Falls, S.D., will be further processed at the Midland plant into finished containment systems.

The company boosted the Midland capacity by threefold, adding shifts and extending production to 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It more than doubled its workforce.

Sioux Falls-based Raven ranked 56th with sales of $129.4 million in the 2016 Plastics News listing of North American film and sheet makers.