Dow Performance Foams Unveils SYNERGY Soft Touch Foams

The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE: DOW) has expanded its Performance Foams business today with the introduction of SYNERGY* Soft Touch Foams. Produced using INDEX* Interpolymers from Dow, the new foams exceed industry standards for softness and toughness, and are prime alternatives to cross- linked foams. SYNERGY 1000, SYNERGY 3000 and SYNERGY 5000 Soft Touch Foams are designed for automotive materials handling, touch-sensitive applications, and protective and military packaging. These products are now available from Dow and its global authorized fabricators. INDEX Interpolymers are a new and unique thermoplastic polymer family based on the copolymerization of ethylene and styrene, two high-volume monomers that previously were incompatible using standard Ziegler-Natta catalysts. "Dow is committed to focusing global resources and the best technology to bring new solutions to market," said Mark Henning, global business director for Dow Performance Foams. "INDEX Interpolymers are cutting-edge and combine the best characteristics of polyethylene and polystyrene. SYNERGY Foams represent the combined strength of ETHAFOAM* Brand Foams, INSITE* Technology and INDEX Interpolymers. We are the first supplier offering these superior foams." The introduction of INDEX Interpolymers, produced via INSITE Technology, Dow's proprietary single-site constrained geometry catalyst technology, has enabled Dow to expand its foam products and service offerings. SYNERGY Soft Touch Foams are made from a proprietary blend of custom-designed low-density polyethylenes and Dow's advanced INDEX Interpolymers. According to Anthony Johnson, North America sales manager for Dow Performance Foams, specific applications for SYNERGY Soft Touch Foams include internal and external transport of automotive parts and components, padding, and protection of military electronics equipment and munitions. "SYNERGY Foams offer select characteristics that traditionally were only achieved by purchasing high-priced, alternative foam materials," Johnson explained. "SYNERGY Foams are ideal for OEMs seeking soft, touch- sensitive materials that afford virtually no abrasion." The new foams are supplied in 2" x 24" x 108" (50 x 600 x 2700 mm) planks and offered in natural and black. Each foam varies in degrees of softness and feel. SYNERGY 1000 has a density of 1.8 pcf, 29 kg/m3; SYNERGY 3000, a softer foam, has a density of 1.6 pcf, 26 kg/m3; and SYNERGY 5000, the softest grade, has a density of 1.5 pcf, 24 kg/m3. Dow offers several varieties of SYNERGY Soft Touch Foams to meet customers' needs. "The broad product range of SYNERGY Foams further illustrates Dow's commitment to finding technology that best suits our customers, separating Dow from its competitors," said Johnson. SYNERGY Soft Touch Foams are strong, resilient and easily used as component materials in products requiring a soft touch and low abrasion. Additionally, they are shock absorbing, vibration dampening and insulating. They work great as barrier or buoyancy components, and as dunnage and cushioning components in packaging applications. SYNERGY Soft Touch Foams are produced using RapidRelease technology, a proprietary process incorporating a patented CFC- and HCFC-free blowing agent system and an accelerated curing system that reduces the amount of blowing agents released into the foam. RapidRelease technology, in combination with INSITE Technology and INDEX Interpolymers, give SYNERGY Soft Touch Foams a level of performance and safety unmatched by competitive offerings. "We've maintained more than 40 years of leadership in the polyolefin foams and packaging industries and continue to demonstrate unsurpassed skill in these areas," said Henning. "No other company has the resources or the ability to quickly leverage existing strengths and new technology like Dow. The introduction of these new, superior foam products is a testament to our ability, success and leadership. "Our research and development activities will continue to probe the limits of technology. We will continue to apply capabilities of advanced polymers and polymer blends to needs- based solutions," he added. SYNERGY Soft Touch Foams are only the first of Dow's advanced materials solutions to be unveiled in 1999. Illustrating its commitment to customers as the first in technology and performance, Dow Performance Foams is planning the introduction of more materials solutions made with INDEX Interpolymers this month, including QUASH* Sound Management Foams for the acoustical market and ENVISION* Custom Foam Laminates. The Dow Chemical Company is a global science and technology- based company that develops and manufactures a portfolio of chemical, plastic and agricultural products and services for customers in 168 countries around the world. With annual sales of more than $18 billion, Dow conducts its operations through 14 global businesses employing 39,000 people. The company has 121 manufacturing sites in 32 countries and supplies more than 3,500 products. For more information in Europe about SYNERGY Soft Touch Foams, contact Michael O'Connor, European Sales Manager, at ++ 49-7227- 914-400. For more information in North America about SYNERGY Soft Touch Foams, contact the Customer Information Group at 1-800-441-4369 and reference Element # 1740. More information about Performance Foams is available on its Web site at ots Original Text Service: The Dow Chemical Company Internet: Contact: in North America, Glendorah Lawrence of The Dow Chemical Company, 517-636-0782, or e-mail,; or Paul Oakley of Gibbs & Soell, Inc., 847- 519-9150, ext. 116, or e-mail, for The Dow Chemical Company; in Europe, Brian Hind of Gibbs & Soell, Inc., London, 00-44-171-736-0780, or e-mail, bhind@gibbs-, for The Dow Chemical Company Web site:

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