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Company History

 

1944 - DeBell and Richardson, Inc. was founded in 1944 when two of the world's most prominent polymer scientists, John DeBell and Henry Richardson, started the first dedicated plastics research and development firm in the United States. Located in the Hazardville section of Enfield, Connecticut, the company rapidly gained a reputation for innovation of engineered compounds and technical service for the growing plastics industry.  DeBell and Richardson, Inc. created and patented dozens of plastics commonly in use today.

 

1972 - In 1972, then President Robert C. Springborn purchased DeBell & Richardson. Inc. and broadened the scope of the company to include testing, analysis and quality assurance. The areas of expertise for these endeavors were chemicals and plastics, electrical / electronics and consumer merchandise. The new expanded company, Springborn Laboratories, became a leader in the quality assurance and consumer products testing market while continuing to provide expert plastics research and development services to a variety of internationally known clients.

 

1975 - In 1975, Springborn Laboratories' vast knowledge base in polymeric materials was called upon to create the company's most important innovation - the development of encapsulants for terrestrial photovoltaic modules. The original PV encapsulant development program, having a duration of more than a decade, evaluated hundreds of polymeric materials and modifier combinations, and included years of advanced weathering studies.  The outcome of the program was clear: modified ethylene vinyl acetate copolymer (EVA), represented the very best combination of performance and cost, easily besting other materials including silicones, urethanes, acrylics, PVB's, ionomers, etc.

 

1979 - In 1979 Springborn Laboratories began marketing EVA for the photovoltaic module industry under the trade name PhotoCap®.

 

1980 - In the early 1980's, the demand for its PhotoCap® EVA became so strong that the company, then known as Springborn Testing and Research (STR), decided to make a significant commitment to the expansion of its pilot manufacturing operation, investing in production-scale equipment and infrastructure.  As a result of the knowledge base acquired through the development of the material in its own laboratories and testing facilities, STR found its ability to provide technical service to solar start-ups as much in demand as its encapsulant products.

 

1990 - In the early 1990's, STR (with an updated name: Specialized Technology Resources, Inc.) increased capacity once again and continued its refinement of EVA-based PV encapsulants, launching products with unsurpassed long term photo-thermal stability, faster curing capability, and dimensional stability.

 

2000 - During the early 2000's, STR polymer scientists were busy developing still more advanced formulations and product configurations, including ultra fast curing encapsulants and multilayer products such as EVA/backsheet and EVA/cover film.

 

2002 - In 2002, STR formed the Spanish company Specialized Technology Resources España, S.A., (STRE) in Asturias, Spain, to better serve its growing customer base in Europe. In June of 2004, STRE officially commenced production, and began planning the addition of its second production line just two months later.

 

2005 - STR acquired Conplex, Inc. in St. Augustine, Florida in January of 2005, subsequently converting the company to a dedicated PV encapsulant manufacturing operation and renaming it Specialized Technology Resources Florida, Inc.

 

2006 - In 2006, STR completed the addition of its second production line at STRE and began preparations for a third line there by purchasing the neighboring property, commencing a building expansion to double the size of the facility, and ordering its largest and most advanced production line to date.

 

2007 - In 2007 STR launched its fourth factory in Somers, Connecticut, USA. This factory is dedicated to the production of multilayer constructions for emerging PV applications.  The Somers facility is the present day location of STR's US based solar division.

 

2009 - In 2009, STR launched its fifth factory, Specialized Technology Resources (Malaysia) SDN. BHD. in Gelang Patah, Johor, Malaysia with the idea of better serving the growing Asian PV market.

 

2010 - November 2010 - STR announced that it closed on its previously announced acquisition of land and a 275,000 square foot building located in East Windsor, Connecticut. STR will relocate the majority of its US manufacturing to the new location. In addition, the facility will house U.S.-based product management and sales teams, as well as a new 20,000 square foot research and development laboratory. The facility acquisition enables STR to complete the planned expansion of its Connecticut manufacturing capacity to approximately 3.0 GW in 2011.

 

2014 - October 2014 - STR launches its newest factory, STR Solar (Suzhou) Company Limited located in Shajiabang, Suzhou, China.

 

2014 - November 2014 - STR relocates its world headquarters and research and development laboratory back to its original facility located at 10 Water Street in Enfield, Connecticut, USA.

 

2014 - December 2014 - STR enters into strategic relationship with Zhenfa Energy Group Co., Ltd., a leading developer of solar PV power stations based in Chongqing, China.

 
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