ATLANTA, Dec. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Lehigh Technologies, manufacturer of sustainable, micronized rubber powders (MRP), announced today the completion of a 40 percent capacity expansion. The company also finalized improvements to its process control and monitoring systems at its world-class plant in Tucker, Ga.
The capacity expansion project, which started earlier this year, required investment of more than $3 million and has increased plant capacity to 140 million pounds. The project included increased capability for pre-processing and material handling, micronized rubber powder classification systems, engineering enhancements on the six production lines as well as the installation of state-of-the-art monitoring for process and quality control. This investment also included the expansion of Lehigh's Application and Development Center to increase formulation and material testing capability in order to help customers develop new products faster. The numerous projects that were part of this investment were made to address growing customer demand in a number of segments, such as the tire and plastics markets.
"These investments show our ongoing commitment to becoming the largest and most technically advanced supplier of micronized rubber powder in the industry," said Alan Barton, chief executive officer, Lehigh Technologies. "More importantly, however, investments such as these demonstrate that there are manufacturers, like Lehigh, making high quality, commercial quantity recycled materials that are increasing in demand. We are at the beginning of a revolution in the mass adoption of sustainable raw materials – we are pleased to be in the vanguard of this movement."
Dave Petroni, vice president of operations for Lehigh Technologies states, "Our production volumes have been growing rapidly over the past three years and at the same time we have expanded our product line to include a broader range of micronized rubber powders, such as nitrile, butyl and natural rubber." He continues, "During this time we have adopted some of the most sophisticated process control solutions from the chemical industry in order to drive continuous improvements in our manufacturing process. This has led to the capital projects needed to dramatically increase our capacity."
Lehigh Technologies' proprietary manufacturing process takes end-of-life tire and other post-industrial rubber material and "upcycles" it into micron-scale, high quality, sustainable powders that are compatible with customers' existing formulations, making it easy to integrate into new or existing products. This material not only helps companies achieve sustainability goals, but also can improve performance attributes such as water resistance, energy savings and flexibility, while delivering significant costs savings over virgin raw materials.
ABOUT LEHIGH TECHNOLOGIES
Lehigh Technologies is a leading green materials manufacturer that turns end-of-life tire materials and other post-industrial rubber into sustainable powders that can be used in a wide range of industrial and consumer applications. Today there are over 100 million tires manufactured containing its products. Lehigh Technologies is a World Economic Forum 2010 recipient of The Technology Pioneer Award for its visionary leadership and transformational technology. Headquartered in Tucker, GA, Lehigh Technologies is privately held and backed by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Index Ventures and NGP Energy Technology Partners. For more information, please visit www.lehightechnologies.com.
SOURCE Lehigh Technologies