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Chemetall’s Advanced Facility Opens in Blackman Township, Michigan

Chemetall, a chemicals manufacturer based in the US, has cut the ribbon on a new manufacturing plant in Blackman Township, Michigan built by O’Harrow Construction Company.  O’Harrow engaged many local companies to work on this project which encompasses an area of 200,000 square feet.

O’Harrow broke ground for construction in May 2011 and came online with the project  in October 2012. The new facility will enable the company to develop up to 1,000 products for use in surface treatment in a wide range of industries, including aerospace, automotive, steel. aluminum and furniture.

Location of New Chemetall Facility

The plant is located at Blackman Charter Township of Jackson County in the state of Michigan. It falls within the SmartZone territory which is spread over 40 acres.  The selection of the site was motivated by the availability of a local work force and the encouragement and support of local and Michigan government and economic development agencies.

The construction phase of the project provided about 200 construction jobs and the plant currently employs about 80 people.

Facility Details

The advanced facility provides space for  administrative, manufacturing and warehousing operations. The facility also has a laboratory to carry out physical testing.

Certain equipment, such as bulk material-handling systems, bulk mixing vessels and bulk packaging lines, introduced at the production site will enable the plant to increase its production capacity and enhance the quality of the products made there.

The production site also features a semi-automated waste treatment system. The treatment facility is expected to reduce the amount of process wastewater at the manufacturing site by up to 90%.

Technology at Chemetall’s Michigan facility

The various metal pretreatment process units present at the technical laboratory are a dipping plant, a spraying plant, a combination of dipping and spraying plant and a roll coater. Similarly, the coldforming processes involve the drawing of tubes, drawing of wires and cold extrusion.

The company is aiming to expand its business within the regions falling under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
The company also implements various coating methods for automobiles, household appliances and several other construction industries. Certain coating methods such as electro coating and spray coating on surfaces provide protection from corrosion and prevent scratches. The process methods in coating are free from nickel and chrome.

Key Players

O’Harrow Construction handled the entire construction phase and utilized dozens of area companies such as Hirst Electric and Comtronics.  The Blackman Township Local Development Finance Authority provided the site and assisted with tax incentives.  The Enterprise Group of Jackson was instrumental in providing assistance in locating the company in South Central Michigan.

About Chemetall

The company is headquartered in Frankfurt Am Main, Germany, and employs about 1,900 people. The company currently has 40 subsidiaries and 22 production sites, and has been in the chemical industry since 1909. It currently boasts a portfolio which sees it produce more than 1,200 patented products.

The company has continued to grow at a rate of 12% per annum for the last decade.

For further information, download the press release from Chemetall.


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