The PEF Division of Toray Plastics (America), Inc.,  producesToraypef® and ToraSoft® electron beam cross-linked polyolefin foam sheet for the automotive and flooring industries.  Toray’s unique foaming process of floating materials on a bath of molten salt allows for superior expansion control, which enables the creation of better thickness and density uniformity, in comparison with foamed olefin sheets from other manufacturers. In conjunction with our sister production facility in Japan, Toray Plastics (America) supplies Toraypef® and ToraSoft® globally.

History

Electron beam cross-linked polyolefin foam was developed by Toray Industries, Inc., using proprietary manufacturing technologies. The product was launched and commercially produced in 1968 (Showa Year 43) at the company’s Otsu, Shiga, Japan, facility, and has since been used in a wide variety of applications. The product was initially manufactured with polyethylene, but high-performance grades, including flexible grades (EVA), flame-retardant grades, and heat-resistant polypropylene foam, were subsequently developed and commercialized. Toraypef® is produced in a long roll at expansion ratios of 5x to 60x, and at thicknesses of 0.2 mm to 12 mm (half an inch).  The foam is a 100 percent closed-cell structure that exhibits excellent thermoforming capability and superior cushioning, shock-absorption, heat insulation, and resistance to water and chemicals, all of which make it ideal for a wide range of applications.

Located in Front Royal, Virginia, the PEF Division of Toray Plastics (America), Inc., was established in 1996 to meet a growing demand for automobile components made with thermoformable polypropylene and polyethylene foam. The Division quickly grew to become North America’s and Europe’s premier automotive supplier of blended polypropylene-polyethylene foam that offers consistent thickness and density.

In 2002 the Division began supplying the flooring market with foam underlayment products under the Toraypef® and Prolayment™ trade names. Today the Division continues to be recognized within the flooring industry as the leading supplier of high-end underlayment.  With its superior compressive strength, sound absorption, and moisture-barrier properties, as compared with urethanes, fibers, and non-woven products, Toraypef® is the flooring manufacturers’ and building and construction professionals’ foam of choice.

In 2009, the Division launched ToraSoft®, a blended polypropylene-polyethylene foam, which offers a combination of softness, haptics, moldability, and thermal stability, for automotive interior trim. Today, automotive OEMs, molders, and laminators choose our firmer Toraypef ®and softer ToraSoft® for manufacturing automotive door and instrument panels, consoles, armrests, glove boxes, seat backs, and knee bolsters, among other parts. A layer of Toraypef® or ToraSoft® on an otherwise hard plastic surface upholds brand value and delivers a message of high quality and performance. Today, more than 160 automotive brands worldwide are built with Toray products.

PEF Division’s Growth

Our Front Royal facility continues to grow. The original, 165,000- square-foot manufacturing plant and warehouse is being expanded to incorporate an additional 16,800 square-feet of manufacturing space. In 2017 and 2018, the facility will expand further with the construction of an additional 33,400 square-feet of manufacturing space and 23,300 square-feet of new warehouse space.