PPG to increase capacity for energy-efficient, high-performance glass

Officials from PPG Industries announced that they will expand capacity at their Wichita Falls, Texas, flat glass plant to meet the growing demand for low-emissivity glass and accommodate future generations of energy-efficient, high-performance products.

Mark Orcutt, PPG's vice president of flat glass, said the company will invest approximately $40 million to install a magnetic sputtered vacuum deposition system at Wichita Falls.The system, which applies thin, transparent coatings that enhance the color and optical properties of glass substrates, will enable the Texas plant to make products such as Solarban 60 solar-control low-e glass, whose coating can help reduce heating and cooling costs of homes and buildings.

"PPG was a trailblazer in the development of solar-control glass more than 70 years ago, and our investment in Wichita Falls will expand our company's ability to supply products with an unsurpassed selection of aesthetic and solar-control capabilities," Orcutt said. "Architects and builders require energy-efficient glass to meet their customers' demand as well as increasingly expanding building codes. PPG has the products and the capacity to meet those needs today and into the future."

When the expansion is complete, scheduled for the first half of 2006, Wichita Falls will become the fifth PPG facility to make coated glass. The others are: Carlisle, Pa.; Evansville, Ind.; Mt. Zion, Ill.; and Salem, Ore.

Pittsburgh-based PPG is the largest glass manufacturer in North America and has been meeting the demands of the commercial and residential construction industries since 1883. The company's glass businesses also supply products for industrial and specialty applications, as well as automotive, aircraft and other transportation original equipment, and replacement windshields and windows. PPG also is a global producer of coatings, fiber glass and chemicals. Sales in 2003 were US$8.8 billion.

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