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Toray to build new carbonization plant in Mexico

By Mary Page Bailey |

Toray Industries, Inc. (Tokyo, Japan; www.toray.com) developed a new variety of regular-tow carbon and has decided to build a new carbonization facility for mass production at the company’s Mexico Plant in Jalisco, operated by its U.S. subsidiary Zoltek Companies, Inc. (St. Louis, Mo.) to cater to the strongly growing carbon fiber demand. The new plant is expected to start production at the end of 2018. 

The overall global carbon-fiber market is expected to continue growing at a rate exceeding 10% annually as the material is utilized in various industries. Market needs are diversifying along with demand growth. This increase is led by the robust demand in the automotive industry. Carbon fiber needs are expected to diversify further, and the demand for overall industrial applications is expected to expand exponentially as electric and fuel cell vehicles begin adopting carbon fibers in full scale. 

To respond to this demand growth, Toray has been advancing the development of new varieties of regular to. Z600 is a new variety of carbon fiber developed by the company, which has physical properties that are in between large-tow, which Zoltek currently produces, and regular-tow, which has a track record in applications such as pressure vessels. The company plans to promote the material for industrial applicationsm such as use in the automotive industry, which is expected to drive carbon-fiber demand. In addition to the new Z600 variety, Toray will continue to develop next-generation, high performance carbon fibers to widely respond to the expanding carbon fiber demand.

 

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