Friday, April 8, 2011

Momentive breaks ground on expansion of specialty quartz plant in Hebron, Ohio

HEBRON, USA: Momentive Performance Materials Inc.’s Quartz & Ceramics Division kicked off an expansion of its specialty quartz production facility in Hebron, Ohio, today with a groundbreaking ceremony attended by state and local government representatives, company leaders and plant associates.

The expansion will enable the company to meet increased demand for its high-purity specialty fused quartz materials, used by the semiconductor industry in the production of computer chips. The company manufactures a variety of specialty products that are essential to microchip production, including fused quartz crucibles used to “grow” silicon ingots, large-diameter fused quartz tubing, rods, and solid ingot in which silicon wafers are processed to make microchips. The Hebron site is the company’s global “center of excellence” for quartz fusion processes and for the production of large diameter quartz tubing.

The $5.4 million project includes building a new 8,600 square foot production area and installing specialized equipment, enabling a 30 percent increase in production capacity for the company’s largest diameter fused quartz tubing. The company sells the tubing globally to clients who make leading-edge 300mm wafer processing furnaces.

The project also will add 10 new manufacturing jobs to the Hebron site. The plant has seen its employment triple since 2009, as the semiconductor industry has recovered from the recession and the company has centered certain operations at the site. The plant currently has 245 employees.

“This is a great day for the Hebron plant and for our global quartz and ceramics business,” said Ray Kolberg, president, Quartz & Ceramics Division. “We continue to develop cutting-edge products to serve the semiconductor industry and other markets, and in doing so we continue to grow our presence in Ohio.”

The division serves a diverse range of industries including the electronics, solar energy, LED and specialty lighting, and electric vehicle markets.

In addition to the Hebron expansion, the quartz and ceramics business also is adding to its production operations in Strongsville, Ohio, which is expected to create an additional 10 manufacturing jobs.

Momentive Specialty Chemicals Inc., a sister company, previously disclosed it anticipates adding 100 jobs over the next several years at its headquarters in Columbus and customer service center in Gahanna, Ohio. Together, the new Momentive’s operating companies employ 780 associates in Ohio and more than 10,000 associates around the world.

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