Toray May Double Carbon Fiber Output to Cater to Daimler, Boeing Demands

September 10 2012

Toray Industries Inc. intends to increase capacity as its customers Daimler AG (DAI) and Boeing Co. (BA) are increasing the use of the lightweight material to make fuel-efficient cars and planes. Capacity at the end of the decade may double from a targeted level of 27,100 metric tons a year in 2015. The company and rival Teijin Ltd. (3401) forged partnerships with Daimler and General Motors Co. (GM), respectively, to develop and produce carbon-fiber parts for cars.

Ramp-up plans for Boeing’s 787, the first aircraft built with carbon-fiber reinforced plastic, and the launch of Airbus SAS’ A350 wide-body aircraft will enable Toray to boost aviation sales by almost four times to 100 billion yen a year by the end of this decade.

The 787 Dreamliner, designed to be 20 percent more fuel efficient, uses lightweight composites for half of its structure. The A350 will compete with Boeing’s 787 and 777 long-range aircraft. The company said in March it would invest 45 billion yen to boost global carbon fiber output capacity 50 percent to 27,100 tons by 2015 as it builds its first plant in South Korea and expands plants and facilities in Japan, the U.S. and France.

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