Arkema Inc. will formally open its polyetherketoneketone resin plant in Mobile, Ala., with a ribbon-cutting on March 25.
Arkema's PEKK, sold under the Kepstan trade name, "holds tremendous promise to impact manufacturing in several industries," officials with the Colombes, France-based firm said in an email to Plastics News.
In aerospace, the material replaces heavier metals resulting in airplanes that weigh less, are more fuel-efficient and are able reduce their carbon footprint, officials said.
The material also is finding a home in 3D printing, since PEKK resins are very customizable. Arkema opened a 3D printing center last year in Exton, Pa.
In the oil and gas market, officials added, PEKK's toughness and performance under extreme conditions are ideal for oil and gas distribution.
Arkema already operates a 109-employee plant in Mobile making acrylic polymers and sulfur chemicals. The firm previously expanded PEKK production at a French plant in 2017.
Arkema employs 20,000 worldwide and posted sales of 8.8 billion euros ($9.9 billion) in 2018. The firm is a major producer of specialty chemicals, as well as fluoropolymers, acrylics and plastic additives.