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News Release

Charleston, SC, December 18, 2007

DuPont Selects South Carolina Site for Planned $500 Million Investment to Expand Production of High-Performance Kevlar® Fiber

DuPont has selected its Cooper River plant to receive the planned $500 million investment it recently announced to significantly expand production of high-performance DuPont™ Kevlar® para-aramid brand fiber for industrial and military uses.

The investment at the Cooper River site, which is located about 30 miles north of Charleston in Berkeley County, will include construction of a new Kevlar® fiber facility.  It is expected to require 100 permanent DuPont jobs, as well as more than 400 contractor jobs during peak construction, which is scheduled to begin in January 2008.  The plant's startup is scheduled for 2010.

The new Cooper River facility is the centerpiece of a multi-phase, multi-year Kevlar® production expansion announced in September that will ultimately increase global Kevlar® production capacity by more than 25 percent.  The company is investing an additional $50 million at its Spruance plant in Richmond, Va., to increase Kevlar® polymer production.  The combined expansion represents the largest single investment in Kevlar® and the largest capacity increase since the fiber was introduced in 1965.

"The new plant at Cooper River, together with our other global assets, will help DuPont meet strong and growing global demand for Kevlar®," said Thomas G. Powell, vice president and general manager, DuPont Advanced Fiber Systems.  "It also will allow us to put our innovative science to work to develop new, differentiated Kevlar® products using the latest new fiber technologies that protect people and processes.

Key growth applications for Kevlar® include:

  • Improved ballistic performance, providing lighter weight protective apparel for law enforcement and military personnel;
  • Higher dexterity for gloves, providing more freedom of movement while protecting hands from cuts;
  • Tailored solutions for automotive tires, providing for a smoother, quieter ride;
  • Reinforcements for pipes in oil and gas, enabling exploration in deeper water;
  • Enhanced honeycomb structures, providing strength for next generation aircraft;
  • Superior fragment protection for the next generation of armored vehicles;
  • Flame resistance and strength to help bedding manufacturers meet fire resistant standards for mattresses;
  • Significant improvements in both tensile strength and compressive strength for more durable foam used on space vehicles, and;
  • Reinforced construction for buildings and in-home storm rooms that provide hurricane and tornado protection to protect homes and businesses.

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