TOKYO, Dec. 3 -- Kuraray Co. Ltd. has announced plans to double annual capacity of
methacrylic resins from the current 20,000 metric tons to 40,000 metric tons at its
Nakajo Plant in Kitakambara-gun, Niigata Prefecture, Japan. The new capacity is
expected to start up in October 2003.
Kuraray said it has been unable to keep pace with demand, particularly in the
optoelectronics field, including light-guide panels which capitalize on PMMA's strong
transparency. Demand has also been strong for LCDs used in PC monitors and TVs.
The company said PMMA is in strong demand in signboards, lighting covers, and
large-scale windows for aquariums. In addition to methacrylic resin sheet and other
products, Kuraray manufactures methacryl-related products, from the raw material MMA
(methyl methacrylate) monomer to PMMA-based synthetic marble.
Kuraray said the new capacity will allow development of an expanded lineup of products
for optoelectronic use, and in soft methacrylic resin products.