Continental Structural Plastics is expanding its facility in Pouance, France with the addition of a sheet molding compound line.
Based in Auburn Hills, Mich., CSP claims to be the largest SMC compounder in North America with volumes exceeding 84,000 tonnes per year.
The $6 million investment in France, announced July 31, will be geared towards further developing advanced composite products, including low-volatile organic compounds formulas currently under development to meet European market regulations.
The line will be capable of producing SMCs reinforced with both glass and carbon fibers.
“The addition of this SMC line to the Pouance facility is an important step in our European growth plans,” said Philippe Bonte, president, CSP Europe.
The new line, which is expected to enhance CSP's material R&D in Europe, is set for operation in the third quarter of 2019.
Acquired in 2013, the Pouance facility operates as CSP's European headquarters and center for advanced technology.
The unit serves as a rapid development centre for lightweighting technologies including carbon fiber resin transfer molding (RTM), Class A RTM and thermoplastic composites.
CSP, part of the Japanese chemicals company Teijin Group, specializes in lightweight materials and composite solutions for the automotive, heavy truck, HVAC and construction industries.