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DuPont To Undergo $100 Million-Plus Nomex Expansion

As part of a high-performance fibers investment strategy, DuPont, Wilmington, Del., reports it will invest more than $100 million in a three-part global capacity expansion of DuPont™ Nomex®, a flame-resistant, high-temperature fiber used in applications including fire, industrial, and military safety gear and accessories; and electrical insulation paper. The company expects to roll out the expansion in phases in the latter part of 2006.

The expansion projects for Nomex ingredients and fiber include: DuPont Chemical Solutions’ construction of a new Asturias, Spain-based facility for the production of isophthaloyl chloride, a key Nomex ingredient; and the addition of new equipment at the existing Nomex plant in Asturias, which will boost manufacturing capacity by more than 30 percent. DuPont, in conjunction with its joint venture DuPont Teijin Advanced Papers, also plans to double Nomex paper production capacity in Japan.

According to William J. Harvey, vice president and general manager, DuPont Advanced Fiber Systems, Nomex in the past three years has experienced strong growth, buoyed by demand in a variety of market segments including protective apparel, electrical insulation and high-performance materials. “This expansion program represents an important step in growing the Nomex business and delivering the innovation and service that customers expect from DuPont.”

The new Asturias plant also will enable additional ingredient production for DuPont Kevlar® and comes on the heels of several investments in that high-performance, high-strength fiber over the last few years.

“As demonstrated by our Kevlar expansions and today’s Nomex announcement, we continue to aggressively invest in our high-performance fibers business,” Harvey said. “With our two-pronged strategy of investing in current products while actively pursuing next-generation breakthroughs, we will ensure that DuPont remains a leader in the manufacturing and marketing of high-performance fibers for many years to come.”

In other company news, DuPont Packaging & Industrial Polymers will raise the prices of all grades of DuPont Elvanol® polyvinyl alcohol by 7 cents per pound. The price increase goes into effect Oct. 16, 2006, or as contracts permit.

September 26, 2006