Asbury Graphite Mills is seeking new business opportunities for its carbon reinforcements in a recently formed joint venture.
Asbury Graphite has teamed up with ZePR, whose predecessor company Zeon Technologies has developed thermoset composites able to withstand extreme wear conditions, such as rings and bushings in high pressure pumps.
The joint venture, based in Gastonia, N.C., is called Titan Advanced Composites. It focuses on problem solving in aerospace, military, automotive, energy and other demanding markets. Its composites can feature lubricity, high conductivity, chemical resistance, high strength and other properties in uses where conventional plastics and metals fall short.
Asbury Graphite will contribute pitch-based and PAN-based carbon fibers, mostly chopped and milled, to the venture. Asbury Graphite is part of Asbury Carbons Inc. a 118-year-old supplier of carbon materials and a wide range of other reinforcements and fillers. The Asbury, N.J.-based company is managed by the fourth generation of the Riddle family.
“This will open new opportunities for new materials,” said Asbury Carbon sales and marketing manager Kevin Miller in a phone interview.
Miller said ZePR predecessor companies have been Asbury customers for several years.
“After looking at our relationship, we decided this [venture] will help drive our business.”
Zeon proved its materials in a centrifugal pump manufactured by Carver Pump of Muscatine, Iowa. After five years in the field, the pump's wear bushing and shaft showed no signs of wearing. That application used bulk molding compounds reinforced with Kevlar or ceramic.
Titan President Randy Lewis said: “We thrive on applications where people think ‘there is no way a composite can do that.'”
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