FORT WAYNE, Ind. (21Alive) -- Bathtubs and showers, windows and doors, decks, boats, cars, aircraft. What do they have in common? They are all made with composite materials. Ancient builders combined mud and straw to make bricks. We've come a long way, baby. In today's "Your Story Made Here", we learn just how far, with the help of a company, right here in Fort Wayne.
Keith MacKenzie says: "Believe it or not, Indiana is the largest state for composite materials in the whole world, and Fort Wayne is a terrific location!"
And that is why a company from Australia chose Ft. Wayne as the place to launch Mirteq, a composite materials manufacturer that is changing the way we make things.
MacKenzie says:" There's a lot of materials out there, very, very good materials, but they are really expensive to use and they used really expensive molds and it takes time to get into production. There really isn't a material that is suitable for the custom fabrication market until we came along.
Mirteq came along about 6 years ago and arrived in the US about three years ago. They hope to double their staff of ten by 2016.
MacKenszie says: "We basically manufacture the material. We manufacture the resin, which sets at room temperature. WE have microfiber products, we also have a resin alloy."
One of Mirteq's products is a sprayable resin that can rehab concrete and steel, an innovation that will change how we manage our civil infrastructure.
MacKenzie: "Essentially what you do is you just spray it on concrete and add layers and the material that you spray on the concrete is actually stronger than the concrete itself. So you can yse the same material to rehabilitate steel and seak structures such as bridges and culverts and things like that so this is really a 21st century new age material."
It's an exciting time for Mirteq. The Society of Automotive Engineers devoted fully a third of their annual video to Mirteq's innovative material. And The American Composites Manufacturing Association presented them with the ACE Innovation Award.
Mackenzie: "People who've seen this, they're rather surprised to tell you the truth because there is nothing like this in the market. We have a very diverse range of customers. It basically includes anyone who wants to make something, anyone who wants to refurbish something…."
A composite combines two materials to form one that is stronger than either of the others alone. Mirteq is destined to be one of the ingredients in a robust and durable northeast Indiana economy!
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