WILMINGTON, DE ─ DuPont announced the start-up of its $500 million Cooper River Kevlar® facility near Charleston, SC. Commercial supply will begin by the end of the year. Overall global production capacity for Kevlar will increase initially by 25 percent and is expected to grow by 40 percent, with planned productivity improvements and continued technology developments over the next two years. The new capacity will allow DuPont to provide customers with next-generation Kevlar products.

Along with a recent $50 million expansion at DuPont's Spruance plant in Richmond, VA, Cooper River represents the largest single investment in Kevlar and the largest capacity increase since the fiber was introduced in 1965. DuPont also manufactures Kevlar in Richmond, VA; Maydown, Northern Ireland; and at a DuPont joint venture, DuPont-Toray Co. in Tokai, Japan.

The Cooper River plant will initially produce innovations that support three primary technology platforms: DuPont Kevlar AP, DuPont Kevlar KM2 Plus and DuPont Kevlar XP.