About Nonwoven


Nonwoven fabrics are flexible sheet structures of fibers layers.

EDANA definition, 1997 : Nonwoven is a manufactured sheet, web, or batt of directionally or randomly oriented fibers, bonded by friction, and/or cohesion and/or adhesion, excluding paper and products which are woven, knitted, tufted, stichbonded incorporating bonding yarns or filaments, or felted by wet-milling whether or not additionally needled. The fibers may be of natural or man-made origin. They may be staple or continuous filaments, or be formed in situ.

Nonwovens are either disposable ( about 85% of sales )or durable (about 15%). Some applications of Nonwovens include :

· Tea bags
· Security envelopes
· Vacuum cleaner bags
· Airline pillow cases
· Car covers
· Face masks
· Shoulder pads
· Floppy-disk liners

The major nonwoven production technologies borrow aspects of paper making, textile manufacture, and extrusion techniques to produce and manipulate fibers onto a web, before bonding them. Fiber manipulation processes can be dry or wet, and bonding process can use chemicals, heat, or a number of methods of tangling the fibers together. Major fiber manipulation and bonding processes include spunbond, meltblown, spunlace, airlaid, thermalbond, wetlaid, and needlepunch.

There are few dedicated nonwovens manufacturers :

DuPont, Kimberly-Clark, and BBA Group, for example, are three of the top five nonwovens producers in the world.
Other major producers better known for other products include Dexter Corporation, Asahi Chemical, and Akzo Nobel.
By nonwoven sales, the largest producer is Germany-based Fruedenberg. By tonnage the largest is Kimberly-Clark, which uses most of its nonwovens output in its own disposable products such as diapers and medical gowns.