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Clariant boosts medical plastic compounds production capacity at Maine plant in US

Specialty chemicals firm Clariant has completed the expansion of its Maine plant in the US to increase production of medical plastic compounds.

The completion of multiyear expansion program follows the recent commissioning of a high throughput twin-screw compounding extruder at its facility in Lewiston, Maine.

Expanded by 40%, the facility features extrusion equipment, materials handling, weighing stations, a maintenance area and additional water-cooling capacity to enable more rapidly production of larger batch sizes of MEVOPUR pre-colored medical plastic compounds.

Clariant said that it configured a smaller line installed last year to meet the processing requirements of fluoropolymer resins such as, FEP, ETFE, and PVDF.

The Lewiston plant allows company to produce materials used in medical devices and pharmaceutical packaging.  The firm also operates two similar facilities in Malmö, Sweden, and Singapore.

Clariant medical & pharmaceutical North America Segment manager Eric Rohr said: "Demand continues to grow worldwide for these specialized compounds and masterbatches, both of which Clariant markets for medical applications under its MEVOPUR brand.

"Fluoropolymers, for instance, are being used with increasing frequency in medical catheters and other applications such as diagnostics that can benefit from their flexibility, lubricity and chemical resistance. They can require special processing equipment and manufacturing techniques, however, and that's exactly what we have put in place in Lewiston."

Clariant said its MEVOPUR materials are used for applications in medical devices and pharmaceutical packaging are required to meet strict regulations on materials.

Image: Clariant’s twin-screw compounding extruder at its facility in Lewiston, Maine. Photo: courtesy of Clariant.