Demand for nonwoven protective clothing at all-time high

Nonwoven fabrics in the textile and manufacturing industry

The onset of the Coronavirus pandemic is likely to accelerate demands for nonwoven protective clothing in the workplace.

Nonwovens are made from staple fibres which are bonded using chemical or thermal processes. They are known for their resistance to abrasion, flame retardant, and waterproof qualities.

In addition, nonwovens are utilised in the professional clothing industry due to their resistance to airborne particles and their renowned breathabilty and tensile strength.

The ongoing effects of COVID-19 have caused demand for protective wear to proliferate across the world. According to a report by the China Global Television Network a factory located in Foshan produces over eighty tons of nonwovens on a daily basis, equivalent to contributing to over a million surgical face masks.

Nonwovens in action

Polypropylene is a single-use plastic nonwoven which is commonly found in PPE face masks, gowns, shields, and headcovers for front line health workers. Alongside, Polyethylene is greatly valued in PPE production in the Asia Pacific region; India has seen researchers at IIT Kanpur formulate polythene PPE kits for protection against SARS-COV-2 virus.

The integration of printing technology in the nonwoven clothing industry has significantly improved the quality of protective wear across the board, also offering lower production costs.

Printed nonwoven fabric has the potential to save significant sums of money, whilst replacing traditional looms with precisely sized nonwoven fabric machinery. Not only would this lower power consumption and carbon footprint, but such ethical and sustainable advancements would also expand the reach of the nonwoven fabric industry.

The growing appeal of nonwoven fabrics

The appeal of nonwoven protective wear has also increased in North America over the past few years, as more health related institutions have adopted higher standards of worker safety. Government guidelines have emphasised the significance of protective clothing and gear in an array of professional sectors, including energy and health.

Many manufacturers are now utilising nonwovens to produce protective clothing on a wider scale than ever before. Dupont has launched its #TyvekTogether initiative which has seen the production over over one hundred million PPE kits for frontline workers.

These programmes have increased the marketability and utility of nonwoven protective wear across the board, raising awareness on the critical importance of the protective clothing industry at this crucial moment in time.

Source: Global Trade

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