Evonik: Expansion of production capacity for PMI foams in the USA
Evonik announced that it is expanding the production of Rohacell rigid, closed-cell foams at its site in Mobile, AL, USA, due to increasing demand for lightweight construction materials for speciality applications. The expansion is scheduled to be completed by Q4 2020. With this investment, the company will significantly increase production capacity for high-temperature resistant polymethacrylimide (PMI) foams in North America.
“The investment in Mobile strengthens our global position as a reliable partner and solutions provider of high-performance, lightweight PMI-based rigid foams and enables us to meet increasing demand in North America over the long term,” said Christina Walkosak, head of the High Performance Polymers business line, Americas, for Evonik.
The expansion of Rohacell production in Mobile includes the construction of an additional production hall. Moreover, all shipping logistics will be combined in the new facility. According to Evonik, it was in the year 2008 that the company ventured across the Atlantic to start production of polymethacrylimide foams in Mobile. “For many years now, we have been seeing consistently high global demand for our high-performance foams, particularly from the aerospace industry and the electronics market, and we are responding to the marketplace by expanding our production capacity accordingly,” said Walkosak. Two years ago Evonik stepped up its Rohacell production in Germany by 20 %. “Now we’ll be significantly increasing our output in North America to be able to support our customers’ growth appropriately.”
The rigid polymethacrylimide structural foam is used in the design and production of sandwich structures in aviation, cars, ships, sports goods, electronics, and medical technology. The light foam withstands high temperatures and pressures, making it an ideal core material solution for composite structures, said Evonik. Such components can be produced quickly and efficiently, reducing production times and costs for the manufacturer. Additionally, the lightweight benefits of the product provide energy savings over the lifespan.