Sabic will increase global capacity for two of its high-performance engineering thermoplastic materials, Ultem, a polyetherimide, and Noryl, a blend of polyphenylene ether (PPE) and polystyrene, "in response to customer needs," said the company in a news release.
“Increased customer demand, especially in Asia, prompted the further capacity expansion plans,” said Ernesto Occhiello, executive vice president, specialties, for Sabic. “While interim capacity gains for both Ultem and Noryl resins have been achieved, global demand for both product lines has increased significantly.”
Sabic currently produces its Ultem resins at two locations, Mount Vernon, Ind., and Cartagena, Spain. It will now add production at its existing compounding site in Singapore, which will lead to a 50 percent capacity increase. The new production facility, which is expected to go online in the first half of 2021, will localize supply for customers in Asia, reducing lead times, especially for shorter qualification cycle applications.
In the Netherlands, Sabic will recommission operations at its Bergen op Zoom PPE resin plant, which will provide customers with a second source of PPE resins globally. When operational, the Bergen op Zoom facility is expected to add more than 40 percent global capacity over a 2017 baseline.
In addition its plants in Mount Vernon and Selkirk, N.Y. will see "incremental manufacturing process improvements" to improve production.