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New PTFE production facility cuts delivery times for Garlock valves
Garlock GmbH has invested around two million euros to build a PTFE production facility in Neuss. Garlock,
a specialist in technical seals and valves, will be producing PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) components
in a new, 650 m2 production hall from March 2012 onwards, using state-of-the-art technology.
The components are used in wafer type valves for sealing pipes and regulating flows. Garlock valves are
used by virtually all major chemical companies in Europe.
"Now we can respond even faster and more effectively to our customers' specific needs," says Herbert Nöckel,
Managing Director at Garlock GmbH, explaining the reason for the new construction project. Until now,
the PTFE components have been procured from the parent company in the U.S. "The new production line here in
Germany will enable us to cut delivery times," says Nöckel. "Thanks to the proximity to our European customers,
we can work together with them and pursue a solutions-based approach to adapting our products to specific needs.
Developing innovations will also be possible here in Neuss by using unique material combinations."
The body lining and the discs of the valves will be made in Neuss from PTFE, a fluorocarbon polymer.
Garlock uses a production process – isostatic pressing – that is very rarely found in Europe. This involves pressing
the plastic on a "waterbed". The water ensures very even pressure distribution, thus making the components extremely
diffusion-resistant. This greatly reduces the diffusion of aggressive media such as chlorine if the valves
are subsequently used in pipes PFTE-lined valves from Garlock can be used in a wide range of applications thanks
to these properties. These applications extend from treating drinking water and providing secure seals in chemical
tankers to reliable use in the chemical industry, where highly aggressive acids and alkalis are processed.
"Garlock valves are used wherever the strictest of requirements apply to quality, durability and reliability,
" explains product manager Thorsten Hardt.
However, producing the components calls for a great deal of technical outlay. The largest press in the Neuss
production hall weighs 80 tons and has a press force of 1,800 tons. It will be possible to manufacture all products
here in sizes from 2 to 24 inches using state-of-the-art technology.
Garlock is not limiting itself to producing plastics – the Neuss plant will also fully assemble and test all valves,
thereby ensuring high quality and excellent durability and continuing a tradition that is over 40 years old.