Paints and coatings company, AkzoNobel, has announced plans to boost the production capacity of light emitting diodes (LEDs). This expansion, an initiative to meet the rising demand in the semi-conductor industry, will take place at the company’s Battleground facility in Texas. The financial details of the expansion were not disclosed.
AkzoNobel’s Battleground facility will receive an investment that will involve extending the Tri-Methyl-Aluminum (TMAL) unit. The new Tri-Methyl-Gallium (TMG) plant will be built and this facility is expected to be the largest of its kind. In the manufacturing of products such as LED wafers, TMAL acts as a feedstock for TMG, which is a high purity metal organic (HPMO) and required for LED wafer manufacturing.
It is projected that the global LED industry will grow significantly in the next decade. The LED market will be driven by display applications such as laptops, personal computers and tablet screens. LEDs will fast become a necessity as they are increasingly becoming the preferred source of light as they consume very little energy, but have extended lifetimes. The demand for LED use in general lighting is also supposed to grow significantly, contributing strongly to the increase in demand over incandescent bulbs and fluorescent lamps.
The expansion of the TMAL unit is slated for completion in the third quarter of 2013. The new TMG plant is expected to be operational in August 2014. AkzoNobel’s portfolio includes brands such as Dulux, International, Sikkens and Eka. The company operates in over 80 countries, housing a staff of 55,000 people committed to excellence.