ALD Thermal Treatment is planning on closing its Blythewood, S.C., heat-treating facility. The shutdown is due to the economic downturn, particularly the struggling automotive industry. The plant, which opened in 2001 and specializes in vacuum heat treatment, is scheduled to close in May 2010. According to ALD, all 25 employees will have an opportunity to work at ALD’s other locations – Port Huron, Mich., and Ramos Arizpe, Mexico. ALD Thermal Treatment is a wholly owned subsidiary of Germany’s ALD Vacuum Technology.