Low-cost carbon fiber for industrial applications, including advanced wind turbine blades, is one goal for an expanding chemical company. Dow Chemical Co., Midland, Mich., says it will expand its renewable and alternative energy reach in the state thanks to more than $108 million in business tax credits and grants. In addition, the Michigan Economic Growth Authority is expected to approve $103 million in tax credits and incentives for Dow’s Powerhouse Solar Shingle project and Kokam advanced battery manufacturing facility.
The $20 million carbon-fiber project will create a center focused on developing low-cost carbon fiber for use in the production of advanced wind turbine blades and in transportation applications. The company is partnering with Oak Ridge National Laboratory to develop the material over about three years, said Steve Bakkal, the Wind Energy Sector Development director for the Michigan Economic Development Corp. The project will be sited in one of Dow’s existing facilities. And while it won’t immediately create jobs, it will have job creation potential later, drawing wind-turbine-blade manufacturers, and other companies who can use the carbon fiber, to the Great Lakes Bay Region, he said.
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