HOUSTON - Dexco Polymers plans to add a second extruder from an undisclosed supplier to its styrenic block copolymer plant in Plaquemine, La. The extruder will boost SBC pellet capacity at the site by 50 percent, to 75 million pounds per year by early 1998, said David Trout, commercial manager. He did not reveal the cost of the expansion, which includes adding auxiliary equipment.
The Dexco facility mainly makes SBC for adhesives. Dexco is a Houston-based joint venture of Dow Chemical Co. and Exxon Chemical Co.
LNP, DuPont planning LCP development
EXTON, PA. - LNP Engineering Plastics Inc., an Exton-based unit of Tokyo's Kawasaki Steel Corp., has agreed with DuPont Chemical Co. of Wilmington, Del., to develop a line of resin compounds based on the liquid crystal polymer resins DuPont introduced last year.
Richard J. Burns, executive vice president and chief operating officer, said in an interview June 7 at his company's headquarters that LNP is developing specialty LCP compounds for a variety of markets.
``Now, a lot of LCPs go into electrical connector markets. Those resins are glass-filled products, and DuPont will continue to provide those. Our focus is elsewhere,'' Burns said.
He defined ``elsewhere'' as selflubricating LCP resin products and other specialty, filled compounds for markets that would require high strength and high flow in molding.
``We are developing a closer relationship with DuPont, and we have to develop the compounds. It will take three to four years for us to get a good feeling about how big of a product these resins could be,'' Burns said.
Hoechas and 3M Co. to enter venture
ST. PAUL, MINN. - Hoechst AG and Minnesota Mining & Manu-facturing Co. negotiators expect by August or September to complete a joint-venture agreement in fluoropolymers. Discussions be-gan last fall.
The venture would employ 600, have sales of about $350 million and rank among the top manufacturers of the high-temperature thermoplastics.
DuPont Co. with its Teflon product line and Daikin Industries Ltd. with Polyflon are other major producers of polytetrafluoroethylene, a primary raw material in compounds.
The Hoechst-3M venture would combine regional positions in marketing, research, production and sales to penetrate automotive, chemical processing and electrical sectors.
Custom Compounding Inc. of Chester Township, Pa., a Hoechst subsidiary that produces PTFE compounds in the United States, will be part of the venture along with Hoechst's Hostaflon PTFE line, which is made in Gendorf, Germany. 3M produces fluoroelastomers under the Fluorel and Dynamar brand names and has a separate preexisting relationship with Daikin.
Hoechst is based in Frankfurt, Germany, and 3M in St. Paul, Minn., where the joint venture is expected to be located.
Amplas doubles size of Michigan facility
STERLING HEIGHTS, MICH. - A Sterling Heights compounder is doubling the size of its plant to 66,000 square feet.
Amplas Compounding Inc. started construction for the expansion last week. Executive Vice President Darin Beaupre expects the addition to be complete in four months.
``We felt the need for expansion because of business. The sales of our generic equivalent materials have taken off and we need room for more machines,'' Beaupre said.
Because Amplas is leasing its plant, the owner will assume the expense of the building expansion.
The company will add two lines and hire an undetermined number of people. Amplas has three lines and 15 employees.
The company serves the automotive and household markets.
American Commodities adds space, workers
FLINT, MICH. - American Com-modities Inc. of Flint recently expanded its plant and added a twin-screw extruder. Officials declined to disclose the amount of the investment.
The company added 40,000 square feet in November to give the plant 125,000 square feet. The new twin-screw extruder, the company's third, was added in January. In addition, the company is adding eight employees over the next six months to its staff of 60.
``We needed to expand because of additional business and the need for more capacity for our Enviraloy product,'' said Kathy Hammons, general manager.
The company's Enviraloy products are compounded post-consumer and post-industrial resins. The company reprocesses the material, enhances the properties and certifies the properties to customer specifications.
Also, the company has received a Q-1 rating from Ford Motor Co.
Nar-Bal expanding with new equipment
CHAGRIN FALLS, OHIO - Mar-Bal Inc., a Chagrin Falls-based injection molder and compounder, is investing about $200,000 in two extrusion lines and mixers.
The company added one line the first quarter of this year to its plant in Ohio. The other line will be added during the third quarter to the company's facility in Cuba, Mo., 90 miles west of St. Louis.
``The demand has increased for our molded parts and outside compounding sales have in-creased,'' sales and marketing manager Scott Balogh said. ``Most of our revenue comes from molded parts so that's our primary reason for expanding.''
Mar-Bal has 30 compounding employees and will have eight extrusion lines when the last one is installed later this year.