HOUSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Orion Engineered Carbons (NYSE: OEC), a leading global supplier of specialty and high-performance carbon black, announced today that next year the company will invest to convert a reactor line at its plant in Ivanhoe, La., from manufacturing soft carbon black to producing hard carbon black, commonly used in tire treads.
“With the continued onshoring of tire production to the U.S., the carbon black supply-demand balance is getting tighter, particularly for hard carbon black,” CEO Corning Painter said.
“To help support this aspect of the automotive tire supply chain, we are going to invest in converting a reactor at our Ivanhoe plant, increasing the domestic supply of hard black by about 30,000 tons per year by mid-2022. Soft black capacity will be decreased by about the same amount,” Painter added.
Adding carbon black to tires makes them stronger, reduces treadwear, allows tire engineers to fine tune performance and protects from the damaging effects of UV light.
Source: Orion Engineered Carbons