The Fire Retardant Additives (FRA) business unit, part of the Huber Engineered Materials (HEM) division of J.M. Huber Corporation, announces a significant capital investment to increase production capacity for Martinal® LEO fine precipitated alumina trihydrate at its Martinswerk Plant in Bergheim, Germany.

“We are pleased to announce this phase two capacity expansion at our Martinswerk operation to support the growing demand of our customers in Europe, India and Asia for our halogen-free fire retardants,” says Martin Schulting, Managing Director of Huber’s FRA business unit in EMEA.  “This substantial investment will increase our production capacity for the high quality Martinal® LEO grades by an additional 20 percent and represents the single largest investment made over the last 40 years at Martinswerk,” Schulting adds.  “In addition to this investment, we are committed to reducing our environmental footprint and have initiated ongoing sustainability discussions with various governmental entities that we believe will result in the delivery of several sustainability improvements in line with our company objectives.”

The new capacity will be phased in several steps with the first incremental volumes scheduled to become available in the second half of 2019, before the expansion project is completed in early 2020.

“This investment underlines the commitment we have to our customers to support their growth and our clear strategy to grow our halogen-free fire retardant business globally,” says Jerry Bertram, Vice President & General Manager of Huber’s FRA Business. “This second capacity expansion project at Martinswerk comes only two years after Huber’s acquisition.  In addition, we are currently expanding fine precipitated alumina trihydrate capacity at our facility in Bauxite, Arkansas (U.S.), which will come online in the third quarter of this year.”

The Martinal® LEO fine precipitated alumina trihydrate grades offer superior processing properties and serve as the company’s global product platform for its customers.

Huber is a global leader in the production of fine precipitated alumina trihydrate and magnesium hydroxide, both non-halogenated fire retardants.  Its FRA business unit has four manufacturing sites in North America and two in Europe.

Huber has been a trusted supplier of halogen-free fire retardants and smoke suppressants for almost 40 years, manufacturing a large portfolio of value-added Hydral®, Hymod®, Martinal® and Micral® alumina trihydrates; Magnifin®, Vertex® and Zerogen® magnesium hydroxides; and Kemgard® molybdate compounds for a variety of end-use applications, including reinforced polyester molding and pultrusion, engineering thermoplastics, roofing, silicone rubber, wire and cable, coatings and carpet backing.  In addition, Huber produces Martoxid® calcined aluminum oxides, Compalox® specialty oxides and Pergopak® carriers and matting agents.

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