Start of Operations at the Ishikawa Plant of NGK CERAMIC DEVICE

May 09, 2017

Expansion in Production Capacity for Key Components of NOx Sensors

NGK INSULATORS, LTD. (President Taku Oshima; Headquarters: Nagoya, Japan; "NGK") today announced that it held a ceremony to start full-scale operations at the Ishikawa Plant (Nomi City, Ishikawa Prefecture) of its manufacturing subsidiary, NGK CERAMIC DEVICE CO., LTD. Production capacity for key components has been expanded to cope with increasing demand for precision in-vehicle nitrogen oxide ("NOx") sensors, which are used for measuring the concentration of NOx in automobile emissions.

Ceramic elements, a key component of NOx sensors, are produced at the NGK CERAMIC DEVICE Ishikawa Plant. The Company currently produces NOx sensor elements at its Komaki Plant (Komaki City, Aichi Prefecture). Since the elements are a key component, they are produced in Japan as a matter of policy. The new element plant was built in Ishikawa Prefecture for the purpose of ensuring a reliable supply in line with the Company’s business continuity plan (BCP), under which production bases are dispersed in case of an unanticipated event like a natural disaster. Capital investment was approximately 9.6 billion yen and an annual production capacity is approximately 7 million units. Production began in April 2017.

NGK CERAMIC DEVICE is a subsidiary that produces electronic components with its proprietary ceramic production technologies. The company produces NOx sensor elements using zirconia tape casting and screen printing technologies with high micrometer-level precision that it accumulated in the production of electronic components that require advanced microscopic technologies.

NOx sensors are mounted in the exhaust pipes of automobiles. They can measure the NOx concentrations in vehicle exhaust emissions in real time with high precision at the ppm (parts per million) level. The detected values of NOx concentration are used for control and fault diagnosis of exhaust gas purification equipment. Demand for NOx sensors has been expanding in terms of both the number of vehicles in which they are used and the number of sensors used in each vehicle in order to comply with new regulations in Europe and stricter exhaust gas regulations for diesel vehicles worldwide. With operations commencing at the NGK CERAMIC DEVICE Ishikawa Plant, the Company’s annual production capacity for NOx sensors has expanded from 10 million units to approximately 18 million units.

As a leading company in the field of NOx sensors, NGK will establish a production system that is properly able to cope assuredly with the continued expansion in demand, thereby contributing to the preservation of the atmospheric environment.

Overview of NGK CERAMIC DEVICE Ishikawa Plant
  1-1 Nomi, Nomi City, Ishikawa Prefecture (within the grounds of NGK INSULATORS Ishikawa Plant)
Site area:
  Approx. 32,100 m2
Total floor area:
  Approx. 20,400 m2
Production items:
  NOx sensor elements
Production capacity:
  About 7 million units/year
Investment amount:
  Approx. ¥9.6 billion
Start of construction:
  September 2015
Start of production:
  April 2017
  Approx. 120 at start of production (Approx. 160 at full production)

Headquarters location:
  434-3, Gotanda, Shimozue, Komaki, Aichi
  President Minoru Ohara
  Produces ceramics for industrial electronics
Paid-in capital:
  ¥90 million (NGK INSULATORS, LTD. investment: 100%)
  August 1994
  640 (as of March 2017)
  Komaki City, Aichi Prefecture
  Tsuru City, Yamanashi Prefecture
  Nomi City, Ishikawa Prefecture

NOx sensors
NOx sensors
NOx sensor elements
NOx sensor elements

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