Asahi Kasei Plastics North America earned honors from the SPE Automotive Division for its role in the co-development, with Denso, of a material for Ford Motor Company’s powered air-purifying respirator. (PRNewswire photo)

December 2, 2021

FOWLERVILLE, Mich.—Asahi Kasei Plastics North America, Inc. (APNA), a compounder of advanced engineered polymers and glass-reinforced polypropylene, received the Innovation Award in a new category of the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE) Automotive Division’s Annual Innovation Awards Competition, APNA said in a release.

The new award category—Automotive Plastics Industry Solutions for COVID-19— was created to highlight how OEMs and suppliers adapted their business needs to help the international battle against the coronavirus pandemic. Asahi Kasei was recognized for a material that it co-developed with DENSO for Ford Motor Company’s powered air purifying respirators (PAPR).

The company received the award at the SPE Automotive Division’s Annual Innovation Awards Competition and Gala on November 10, 2021, in Livonia, Michigan,

“Asahi Kasei is resolute in our fight against COVID-19,” said Todd Glogovsky, president and chief operating officer of Asahi Kasei Plastics North America, in the release. “We are honored to participate with Ford Motor Company and DENSO in the development of the powered air purifying respirator. We are proud to be recognized by our customers as a supplier that will step up in a time of need.”

The powered air purifying respirator, developed with Asahi Kasei’s Thermylene® P-40TC-1102 grade material, helped deliver the critical fit, form, and functional needs to enable an application that supports community health. The talc-filled Thermylene is said to have helped  partners to exceed design requirements because of its high stiffness and favorable dimensional stability capabilities.

“We give our heartfelt thanks to all Asahi Kasei employees who supported this important project to protect frontline workers,” said Sergio Pujols, vice president of energy management engineering at Denso, in the release. “Their team mobilized quickly in an uncertain environment to help get the job done. We appreciate their strong collaboration.”

The award is APNA’s fifth category award from SPE in the last 10 years. Asahi Kasei Plastics North America’s last won an award for its contribution to a high strength, self-tapping composite nut that was recognized in the Chassis/Hardware category in 2018, the company said.

“This award is a testament to Asahi Kasei’s commitment in improving the quality of life in our society and the importance we place in the partnership we have with our customers,” Glogovsky said in the release.

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