Schunk Expands German Plant to Produce Carbon Fiber Reinforced Composites

Since 2007 the Schunk Group has committed euro 65 million of capital investment in response to business growth in high-temperature applications. In the biggest plant expansion in its history, the company has added almost 140,000 square feet of new floor space and renovated a further 45,000 square feet at its headquarters plant in the German state of Hessen.

This has enabled Schunk to increase its capacity for manufacturing, purifying and coating custom-made CFC (carbon fiber reinforced carbon) and graphite components for the solar, semiconductor, and polysilicon industries.

Thanks to this expansion in the composites segment, Schunk is now the only manufacturer in the world that can handle the entire process chain: from producing the basic materials, planning, developing and fabricating components, through to quality assurance and testing — even for large components measuring up to 10 feet by 6.5 feet. Thermal post-processing of the CFC materials takes place at the newly opened, 37,500-square-foot Thermal Technology Center. In terms of infrastructure and material flow, this facility has been specifically designed for producing carbon fiber reinforced composites. For the purification and coating processes, new reactors for chemical vapor deposition and infiltration (CVD / CVI) making pyrolitic carbon and silicon carbide coatings, along with high-temperature purification furnaces, have been installed in another 37,500-square-foot facility. As a result of the huge capital expenditure in this area, Schunk's production capacity in the high temperatures material segment has quadrupled.

Schunk Kohlenstofftechnik and Schunk Graphite Technology will be presenting their products for the solar, semiconductor, and polysilicon industries in the German booth at Intersolar North America at the Moscone Center, San Francisco, July 13–15, 2010 (Level 1, Booth 7822).

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