Saint-Gobain Makes Significant Investment in Norton Bear-Tex® Nonwoven Portfolio


Phase II investment includes increased R&D efforts and manufacturing efficiencies



WATERVLIET, NY – With advances in manufacturing technology and the ever-increasing need for streamlined operations, industrial manufacturers are utilizing near-net-shape processes to  develop products under much tighter tolerances that are as close to "finished" as possible. While necessitating less additional machining, these precision parts require precision surface finishing solutions. To support these operation advancements, Saint-Gobain Abrasives, the world's leading manufacturer and supplier of performance-engineered abrasives, announces the second phase of an ongoing investment in its Norton Bear-Tex® portfolio of nonwoven products. The global investment strategy includes increased research and development (R&D) efforts, and improved material and process handling for better manufacturing efficiency.



"With this initiative, Saint-Gobain reaffirms its commitment to the Norton Bear-Tex® portfolio of innovative nonwoven surface finishing solutions," according to Paul Krupa, Senior Product Manager, Saint-Gobain Abrasives. "Phase two represents a multi-year, multi-million dollar investment strategy to meet our customers' needs and support global growth across key markets."



Increased R&D efforts have already yielded concrete results, including innovative Clean Bond™ resin technology that allows for a smear-free finish, and advanced nonwoven web formation for enhanced performance. As near-net-shape manufacturing becomes the norm, demand for high performance nonwoven finishing products has also driven improvements to Saint-Gobain's nonwovens manufacturing facility in Reynosa, Mexico. Equipped to manufacture the entire portfolio of Norton Bear-Tex® nonwoven surface finishing products, the facility has accelerated its use of automation, resulting in streamlined material and process handling.



"Continuous improvements and world-class manufacturing are standard operating procedure for us," says Krupa. "Equipment OEMs have made recent upgrades that, combined with our own technological innovations, we can use to bring the best advantages to our customers"



About Norton



Founded in 1885, Norton Company manufactured the first precision-made and mass-produced grinding wheel, and was one of first producers of commercial coated abrasives. Today, Norton-brand products are used widely across a variety of industries, including manufacturing, construction, aerospace, electronics, and general automotive, among others. The company's proprietary resins and non-woven materials offer improved productivity and faster throughput, reducing labor requirements, and helping customers complete projects more quickly. In 1990, Norton was acquired by Saint-Gobain, the world leader in the manufacture of engineered materials, headquartered in France. To learn more about Saint-Gobain Abrasives' Norton brand capabilities and offerings, please visit: http://www.NortonBeartex.com.



John L. Kulp

Consultant

ABI

marketing public relations

d +1 212-529-2634

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New York, NY 10006

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