|Boeing 787 production ramp-up spurs carbon fiber prepreg expansion in Washington State.|
TCA produces Torayca prepreg (resin-impregnated carbon fiber sheet) mainly for aerospace and automobile applications for the U.S. market and its existing production facilities in Japan and Washington State have been operating at full capacity, following the monthly assembly rate of Boeing 787 reached 10 in November 2013.
The production facility enhancement at TCA is in response to Boeing's decision in October 2013 to raise the assembly rate of 787 aircraft to 12 in 2016. Toray's expansion targets a stable supply of Torayca prepreg for 787 aircraft by obtaining production line qualification from Boeing.
The Toray Group is currently constructing its second production line at the Ishikawa Plant in Japan for high value-added Torayca prepreg for industrial applications such as chassis for IT devices and automobile outer panels (hoods, roofs, etc.). This new facility is expected to start production in February 2015.
In addition, in December 2013 the Group shipped prepreg for 787 aircraft for the first time from its Ishikawa Plant, also as part of a move to enhance the Torayca prepreg supply network and to actively pursue higher added value of the products at its three global production bases, including the Ehime Plant in Japan.
With the expansion of facilities at TCA, Toray will not only be able to fully meet the demand from increased production of the Boeing 787 but also to further augment a reliable supply structure for Torayca prepreg to cater to the fast-growing high value-added products market.