Japan: Panasonic, Toray to Build 'World's Largest' Plasma Plant

Matsushita Electric Industrial, which boasts the Panasonic brand, and the diversified chemical group Toray Industries, say they plan to construct another PDP (plasma display panel) manufacturing facility in Japan, and they said this plant will be the world's largest.

It will be the fifth plant of their joint venture and will allow Panasonic to increase its PDP production capacity to make it "by far the largest PDP manufacturer in the world," both firms said in a statement.

The new facility will be built in Amagasaki, Japan, near the companies' fourth PDP plant. Construction is not scheduled to start until next November, and the first phase will be completed in May 2009.

The new plant will have a monthly production capacity of 1 million units (based on 42-inch plasma panels)--which the firms said would represent the largest PDP production capacity in the world. A streamlined production line will glean up to 10, 42-inch panels (or eight 50-inch panels) from a single substrate of glass.