Composites specialist Hexcel has officially launched its US $ 250 million carbon fiber plant at Roussillon, France. The new plant is part of Hexcel’s ongoing worldwide investment to create a diversified and robust supply chain to support aerospace customers’ growing demand for carbon fiber composites.
Roussillon/France; Stamford, Connecticut/USA – Hexcel’s new carbon fiber facility will occupy a 37-acre site at the Osiris Chemicals Industry Platform in Roussillon and will be comprised of both polymerization and carbonization lines. Nick Stanage, Hexcel Chairman, CEO and President, presided over the event with the support of André Vallini, French Secretary of State for Territorial Reform and Didier Evrard, Airbus EVP and Head of Programs. Mr. Stanage said, “Together with our capacity expansions in the U.S., this new facility in France will strengthen our global supply chain by adding precursor and additional carbon fiber capacity in Europe.”
The Roussillon facility is located close to Hexcel’s weaving and prepreg manufacturing facilities near Lyon. At today’s event, Mr. Stanage announced further investments totaling US $ 22 million at these existing facilities to include capacity expansions at Hexcel’s carbon fiber weaving plant at Les Avenières, and an additional resin impregnation line in Dagneux, Montluel. These additional investments are expected to create 100 more jobs by 2018.
Composites in High Demand with Aerospace Customers
Carbon fiber from the new plant will be supplied to Hexcel customers including Airbus for the A350 XWB and Safran for the CFM LEAP engine. Construction of the new plant will begin by September 2015 and is expected to employ 120 people when fully operational in early 2018. Today Hexcel employs close to 1000 people in France.
Didier Evrard, Airbus EVP and Head of Programs commented: “We are delighted by Hexcel's decision to build this new carbon fiber plant in Europe. This significant investment will further secure the A350 XWB production ramp-up and demonstrates the high level of Hexcel’s commitment to the success of the A350 XWB program.”