AMERICAN PACIFIC ANNOUNCES STATUS OF ITS HALOTRON AND SODIUM AZIDE PROJECTS
AMERICAN PACIFIC ANNOUNCES STATUS
OF ITS HALOTRON AND SODIUM AZIDE PROJECTS
LAS VEGAS, June 22 /PRNewswire/ -- American Pacific Corp. (NASDAQ: APFC) (the company) announced today the status of its sodium azide and Halotron projects.
Construction of the 2,000 tons-per-year sodium azide plant owned by the company's American Azide Corp. subsidiary in Iron County, Utah, is on schedule. The company's focus is on the dramatic increase in requirements for sodium azide to support the deployment of automotive airbag safety systems in model years 1993 and 1994. Production of sodium azide for product and process verification is anticipated in July 1992. Quality samples will be delivered at the conclusion of that production to both TRW Vehicle Safety Systems and Morton International's Automotive Safety Products Division. The first of two production lines is scheduled to be operational in early December 1992, followed by the second line in January 1993.
Fred D. Gibson Jr., chairman of the company, expressed "the company's satisfaction with the progress of this key project. Our team has worked effectively in expediting engineering, plant erection and procurement of the required specialized equipment. The rapid completion of this $40 million plant will represent an achievement equivalent in every way, including quality, reliability, schedule and budget, to the 1989 completion of the ammonium perchlorate plant operated by the company's Western Electrochemical Co. subsidiary in only 10 months."
The company's Halotron project, which is being executed by the company's Halotron Inc. subsidiary, is moving forward with similar success. The 2,000 tons-per-year initial plant begin erected in Iron County is substantially complete. With the arrival of two specialized compressors slightly behind schedule in early July, the plant will be fully operational.
Gibson expressed "particular satisfaction with two recent project developments. First, as anticipated, the company has now received a Request for Information on halon 1211 alternatives from the United States Navy, expected to be published in the Commerce Bulletin Daily next week. This is a key milestone marking the company's success in moving forward rapidly with military testing, verification and procurement of the Halotron I fire suppression system. Second, the company has received as expected a report from the New Mexico Engineering Research Institute (NMERI), which has performed extensive analyses and tests of Halotron I. That report, which has been forwarded by NMERI to the United States Air Force, concludes in part that, 'Halotron I should be considered as a viable halon replacement for certain streaming applications for both hand-held and wheeled fire extinguishers. The agent should be included when establishing qualification testing programs for streaming halon replacements.'
"That report also concludes that (1) the Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP) of Halotron I is 0.016 (less than 10 percent of the maximum ODP limit of 0.2); (2) the Global Warming Potential (GWP) of Halotron I is very low, in the range of 0.11 to 0.23 (compared to a much higher GWP of 2-12 for the only other candidate agent to replace halon 1211); and (3) although the toxicity of halon 1211 exceeds that of Halotron I in some application scenarios, and vice versa, 'it is unlikely during proper use of an agent in a firefighting scenario that a firefighter would be exposed to the lethal concentration of either halon 1211 or Halotron I.'"
Gibson concluded with the observation that "the progress of our Halotron I testing and verification program is excellent. We exercised our option and acquired worldwide rights to Halotron in February, only four months ago. Since that time, progress has occurred rapidly in a series of related and incremental steps. We are well along in that process, and are most enthusiastic about the outcome. We believe that Halotron business will shortly be a major contributor to our future revenues and profits."
In addition to its Halotron and sodium azide projects, the company's principal business activities consist of the production of chlorate and perchlorate chemicals, including chiefly ammonium perchlorate, the oxidizer utilized in composite solid rocket propellants employed in a large number of space and military systems, the design and manufacture of pollution control systems and industrial and commercial real estate development.
/CONTACT: C. Keith Rooker, executive VP of American Pacific, 702-735-2200/
(APFC) CO: American Pacific Corp. ST: Nevada, Utah IN: CHM ARO SU: JL-KJ -- LA005 -- 2234 06/22/92 08:33 EDT