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Wednesday, July 20, 2005

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Wednesday, July 20, 2005
Regal gets grant to support new manufacturing process

DURHAM The New Hampshire Industrial Research Center (NHIRC) at the University of New Hampshire has awarded a second grant to Regal Sleeving and Tubing of Newmarket to help support continued development of more efficient production processes by researchers at the University of New Hampshire.

Regal Sleeving and Tubing has been granted $25,471 to support a $50,943 project at UNH. In June 2004, Regal Sleeving and Tubing was granted $24,798 to support a $49,597 project at UNH to begin the project.

"The results of the first project have resulted in a 50 percent to 100 percent increase in the production process, and Regal has increased the number of employees from 36 to 45," according to Robert Dalton, executive director of the NHIRC.

A 60-year-old company in downtown Newmarket, the former Suflex Sleeving and Tubing Company was saved from bankruptcy two years ago after it was purchased by the plant's two managers. Prior to the purchase, Suflex had been losing money, but with help from the New Hampshire Manufacturing Extension Project (NHMEP), the two employees acquired the company, renamed it Regal Sleeving and Tubing, and turned it around. However, the company's leased plant housed an outdated and cost-prohibitive process for drying one of its key products, acrylic fiberglass sleeving.

After the NHMEP contacted the NHIRC about developing a new, more efficient and less costly chemical formulation and drying process, the NHIRC contacted UNH Professor P.T. Vasudevan in the Department of Chemical Engineering, who had success working with a similar product a few years ago.

 
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