Celgard Announces Expansion Of Lithium-ion Battery Separator Capacity In Korea

Celgard, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Polypore International, Inc. (NYSE: PPO), and a leading global supplier of microporous separators used in lithium-ion batteries, today announced that it plans to expand production capacity at its existing lithium-ion separator manufacturing facility in Ochang, South Korea.

Celgard plans to invest approximately $30 million in the expansion project, which is expected to begin the second half of this year. The expansion will significantly increase Celgard’s lithium-ion battery separator production capacity in Korea and is a result of the company’s accelerated success in the region.

The additional capacity is expected to come online in 2011, and will serve customer growth in consumer electronics applications.

In January 2010, Celgard also announced plans to expand capacity at its Charlotte, North Carolina, U.S. facility as well as construct a new manufacturing facility in Concord, North Carolina, U.S. to support increasing demand in the Electric Vehicles (EDV) market.

Celgard is a leading global supplier of specialty microporous membranes. Celgard(R) separators are used in lithium-ion batteries for personal electronics devices such as notebook computers, mobile phones, digital cameras, power tools, and new applications such as reserve power/grid management systems and Electric Vehicles (EDVs).

These separators play a critical role in the performance and life of lithium-ion battery cells by providing a barrier between the positive and negative electrodes – preventing short circuits while controlling the exchange of lithium ions from one side of the battery to the other.