PBI Performance Products, Inc. is the world’s only commercial producer of poly-2,2′-(m-phenylene)-5,5′-bibenzimidazole. We offer PBI product in powder, solution, compound, film and fiber form, and work together with existing and prospective customers to meet performance objectives.

Through people, products, and perseverance, we offer innovative high performance PBI solutions – that’s our mission!  Involve us to make that happen.


Originally developed as a fire resistant fiber for NASA, PBI continues with technical breakthroughs enabling new applications.

1961H. Vogel and C.S. Marvel first synthesized fully-aromatic Polybenzimidazole (PBI) and documented its exceptional thermal oxidative stability.
1967Spurred by the tragic pre-launch fire which killed the Apollo 1 space crew, NASA contracted with Celanese to manufacture PBI for astronaut’s clothing and continued to do so in the Apollo, Skylab and Space Shuttle programs.
1976The International Association of Firefighters (IAFF) published its Project FIRES (Firefighters Integrated Response Equipment System) report. The report stated that a blend of 40% PBI/60% Kevlar provided high tear strength and high heat resistance.
1983Celanese commissions its PBI polymerization and fiber plant in Rock Hill, SC USA.
1989Hoechst Celanese awarded the first patent for compression molded Celazole® PBI articles (U-Series) which was quickly followed by their first patent for PBI-Polyaryleneketone blends (T-Series) in 1991.
1994New York City Fire Department specified PBI for their protective turn-out gear, setting the standard for municipal fire department PPE. By 1996, the product was sold globally. Today, the company’s fiber has gained global acceptance as being the highest performing dimensionally stable, flame-resistant fiber on the market.
1996High-purity Celazole® PBI parts are introduced and commercialized for semiconductor and flat-panel display Chemical Vapor Deposition, Physical Vapor Deposition, Etch and related manufacturing processes.
2000PBI becomes a supplier of PBI polymer and film to the emerging fuel cell industry for High Temperature Membrane Electrode Assemblies, and spins out the Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) cell business in 2004.
2005The InterTech Group, Inc., owned by Jerry and Anita Zucker, purchased the PBI business from Celanese, giving it new life and a new mandate to grow and fulfill its global potential.
2012Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) demonstrates stable H2/CO2 separation efficacy at record flux and selectivity with no performance degradation over a 330 day evaluation at 250C in simulated syngas with a PBI separation membrane.
2016NASA qualifies the use of PBI in the insulating compound for the reusable and largest solid fuel rocket motor ever built for flight – the Space Launch System Five-Segment Booster.

Learn about Nasa’s contribution to PBI


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