Evonik to expand PMMA film capacity in Germany


German chemicals firm Evonik is to construct a new production plant for high-quality flat films made from multi-layer polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA). To finance the project, the company plans to invest a sum in the double-digit millions in its Weiterstadt site. The plant is scheduled to supply the initial commercial film batches by the end of 2018. The output was not disclosed.

“With the investment we have now approved, we are strengthening our role as innovation leader for acrylic-based technologies and products," said Martin Krämer, head of the Acrylic Products Business Line. The new plant will enable production of wide films with a previously unachieved number of layers, says Evonik.

Multi-layered PMMA films are used in medical technology, window and façade construction, and in the graphics industry. As recently as mid-January, Evonik presented façade elements made from fibreglass plates equipped with a top layer made of Plexiglas film at a trade show. The thermoset resin and glass fibres are protected in such a way that the plates also have an aesthetically pleasing and brilliant appearance, according to Evonik. “With the new multi-layer films, we can ensure the longevity of such exterior components for façades,” says Michael Enders, head of film activities at Acrylic Products.

The demand for long-lasting and sustainable products has become increasingly important, particularly in the construction and architecture segment.

The new plant will also allow completely new film compositions. “We're expanding our offerings of custom-designed specialty films that offer not only our customers but also the consumers genuine added value,” says Enders. “Wider multi-layer PMMA films allow particularly long-lasting and sustainable products and offer our customers new design and processing possibilities."

With production facilities in Europe, North America, South Africa and Russia and a global sales network, the Acrylic Products Business Line of Evonik’s Performance Materials Segment is one of the leading producers of PMMA worldwide. In 2015, the business line’s roughly 1,000 employees generated sales of EUR375 million.


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