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 From left, Oklahoma Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb, Duncan Recycling and Refining co -owner and Facility Manager Mark Spradling, DR2 co-owner and Operations Manager Steve Threet and DR2 President David Nichols smile as they show a plaque presented to DR2 by Lamb on behalf of the state.

Duncan celebrates opening of facility that recycles cars' catalytic converters

Duncan got a much-needed shot of positive news on the economic development front Monday as a new company formally opened in the town's northside industrial park.

Duncan Recycling and Refining, also known as DR2, employs state-of-the-art furnace technology to "preferentially separate" platinum group metals from spent automotive catalytic converters. Company President David Nichols said plans are to extract hundreds of pounds of high-value alloy each day. Material left over after the smelting process will be made into a marketable building product. There's even a high-tech dust collection system in place at the plant to gather up and make use of fine amounts of material that might otherwise be lost.

The new company already employs 65 people and co-owner and Operations Manager Steve Threet said plans are to hire a "second round" of employees in four to five weeks.

The company has invested more than $8 million in the nearly 22,000-square-foot building. Nichols told 150 or so people who turned out for a ribbon-cutting celebration that the long process of bringing DR2 from vision to reality wasn't easy, but one step  choosing to locate in Duncan  was, because of the high quality of the local work force.

"This is where I learned to work," he said.

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