As a world leader in designing and manufacturing screws and barrels for the plastics industry, including companies that make everyday plastic products, Xaloy is now investing in the future.

"The goal is for us to become the sustainability solution leader in the industry," Cheryl Sayer, Xaloy's VP of Engineering and CTO. "We want to develop products that allow us to plasticize new feed streams, polymers that are biodegradable, compostable, making use of post-consumer regrind as well as new polymers, engineered polymers that are being introduced into the industry."

To achieve that goal, Xaloy is adding an 11,000 square foot R&D innovation center into their existing facility in Austintown. It will feature state of the art equipment for analysis and creating new technologies geared toward sustainability.

"A lot of it is advanced manufacturing technologies using laser rather than gas furnaces, gas to coat screws, to put the hard face on the screws," Sayer said. "Laser using robotics. Looking at additive manufacturing rather than subtractive manufacturing. To build up and use only what you need, putting it where you want it, when you want it. Looking at wire versus powders for inlay coatings, again its highly sustainable."

Sayer says a big focus on the lab will be on new inlays for barrels.

"The barrels have a lot of technology, inlays, bimetallic inlays we develop that try to prevent corrosive wear, so we want them to last for a very long time and then all of our barrels are able to be rebuilt and reused and that is also part of our sustainability mission," Sayer said. "We also have laser cladding, another technology for putting inlay on the inside of the barrel and that inlay lasts even longer than our bimetallic cast inlay, so we're continuing to develop new inlays for these new feed streams and again the goal is to be able to reuse and recycle the barrels."

Xaloy's move towards sustainability is not only a choice the company wants to make, but is also a necessity.

"There is a big push for sustainability," Sayer said. "There are government regulations coming through where we need to introduce a certain percentage of post-consumer regrind into plastic products. Europe is a little bit ahead, there is a lot of legislation coming in from California and we see that sweeping across the country, so we want to be the leaders in that space."

It's a commitment to advancing technology while reducing their carbon footprint which underscores the importance of innovation and environmental responsibility.

The expansion will create 8 jobs for workers inside the innovation center and 21 more manufacturing positions to make the new products they create.

Xaloy hopes to have a soft opening on the new innovation center in January of 2024.