4M Industrial Oxidation, LLC, a Knoxville, Tennessee-based carbon fiber technology company and now a wholly owned subsidiary of 4M Carbon Fiber Corp., holds the exclusive rights to commercialize atmospheric plasma oxidation for the production of carbon fiber that was co-developed by 4XT and Oak Ridge National Laboratory. It completed a reverse merger in 2017 with Woodland Holdings Corp, an SEC reporting company, to position itself as a public entity. In early 2018, Woodland changed its name to 4M Carbon Fiber Corp (“4M”). 4M determined that the best way to extract the economic and technical value from the technology is to build carbon fiber production lines in collaboration with strategic partners. The technology has been proven to use 75% less energy, produce a high-quality fiber, and use a third of the footprint for the same production capacity. These claims have been validated by multiple international carbon fiber producers and 4M is negotiating with several potential strategic partners to participate in the launch of the production of low-cost carbon fiber. The use of this technology is expected to significantly reduce the upfront CAPEX and ongoing OPEX of carbon fiber production which will open up numerous markets in need of strong, light materials.
The carbon composite industry is a $2 billion market expected to grow at least 10% CAGR through 2024 (according to Composites World Magazine Aug 2016) with growing demand from the auto industry, trucking industry, rail cars, pressure vessels, infrastructure, wind energy and other industries that require strong and lightweight materials. Projections from the JEC Conference in South Carolina in December 2017 revealed that more than 150 new carbon fiber lines will be required if there is no significant reduction in carbon fiber cost. This need will drastically increase with a reduction in the cost of carbon fiber. The oxidation technology is patent- and trade-secret protected and 4M has exclusive rights to use the technology to produce carbon fiber.