Representatives from the Charleston Regional Development Alliance (CRDA) visited Paris for the JEC Europe Composites Show last month.
Held March 10-12, the event is the world’s largest composites and advanced materials trade show.
A number of companies have expressed interest in locating their advanced materials operations to the area, with some already making the move.
The Boeing Co. last year opened a new Research & Technology Center to focus on composite fuselage manufacturing, in addition to advanced manufacturing technology. TIGHITCO opened a 100,000-square-foot manufacturing facility that generates composite materials for aircraft in 2013; and in 2011, CargoComposites opened its new headquarters and assembly facility in the state.
In addition, the Composites Manufacturing Technology Center, which is led by the South Carolina Research Authority, develops improved manufacturing processes for composites and advanced materials. The center also hosts The Composites Consortium, allowing more than 30 separate entities, including defense contractors, weapons systems prime contractors, composites industry suppliers and academic institutions to collaborate.
The area's expertise in manufacturing, a major port, and many research and innovation organizations make the region an ideal location for the composites industry.