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Nonwoven Sorbent Use to Expand Across the Healthcare Sector


Nonwoven Sorbent Use to Expand Across the Healthcare Sector

Higher adoption across personal care, healthcare, and water treatment applications will significantly influence the market for nonwoven sorbents. In addition, the rising instances of oil spills and leakages have given rise to numerous cleanliness concerns.

Nonwoven sorbents are derived from melt-blowing processes that employ propylene polymers and are mainly used as oil sorb materials. These components possess high bulk and strength, maximum oil capacities and absorption rates across various applications.

As per estimates, the global nonwoven sorbents market size could reach a significant value through the next few years.

Rising preference for spunbound components

Annual revenue from spunbound nonwoven sorbents will gain remarkable traction owing to the rising deployment of the technology. These materials act as antistatic absorbents and are well suited for dry and cold climates as well as outdoor use. The sorbents selectively absorb oil and repel water.

On a further note, melt-blown spunbond nonwoven oil sorbents are ultra-light with strong characteristics and resemble polyester. They show high tensile strength & durability whilst having maximum absorption capabilities. Another impact rendering factor for these sorbents is that thicker fluids can diffuse into the spunbond membrane apart from saturating the extremely absorbent melt-blown center layer.

Wide scope across healthcare applications

The demand for nonwoven sorbents across the healthcare sector is anticipated to grow significantly owing to their increasing adoption. These materials are widely used in the creation of smart wound care products to offer controlled vapor transmission, absorbency as well as low skin adhesion. They also induce a moist wound healing environment. Furthermore, the sorbents render protection against dry and wet contact and excellent fluid absorbency & uniformity. They comprise air-borne particles and are abrasion-resistant as well as lint-free.

Potential in personal care

The application of nonwoven sorbents in personal care will record a substantial revenue share in the next few years. This can be attributed to their increasing penetration in products like baby diapers, as well as in feminine hygiene, and adult incontinence. Besides, the sorbents offer superior absorption, strength, softness, smoothness, and uniformity. These materials can be enhanced with the addition of lotions to cater to specific uses.

Innovations to foster product demand

Suppliers of nonwoven sorbents are focusing on inorganic strategies like acquisitions, mergers, and partnerships to sustain competition. They are also keen on novel product developments, innovations, and technological incursions to meet the increasing needs of consumers. For instance, in March 2017, Indian maritime company, NAVTEK introduced a timely solution and incorporated an environmentally friendly and absorbent nonwoven mat for clean-up activities at a spill site.

Mitsubishi Chemicals Holdings Company, Kolon Industries, LG Chem Ltd., W. R. Grace, Honeywell, Calgon Carbon Corporation, and Arkema are some other firms in the business.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic drew a slightly negative impact on the demand and supply of the nonwoven sorbents in the first quarter of the industrial lockdown. However, as all the business activities have now resumed, the industry forecast could gradually garner considerable momentum.


Face Masks to Drive Nonwoven Cleanroom Apparels Demand in the Near Future

Rising demand from various verticals like pharmaceutical, medical equipment, and the electronics sectors will anchor the adoption of nonwoven cleanroom apparel. The prevalence of several chronic and contagious disorders, like the present coronavirus, has resulted in an increasing need for sanitation and disease protection. Nonwoven cleanroom garments are gaining wider popularity in comparison to other materials as they do not necessitate the need for spinning or weaving the fabrics and can be derived from different sources of raw materials.

The nonwoven apparels are eco-friendly as well as sterilized and are gradually replacing traditional barrier-rendering and aseptic fabrics as they offer single-use and are easily disposable. They do not require re-cleaning or sterilization and effectively help to eliminate contamination. These materials offer fast production, lower costs, high yield as they can be manufactured in large quantities. Apart from these features, they can provide elastic recovery, aeration filtration, and absorbent insulation. Furthermore, the nonwoven fabrics are waterproof, soft, light, and not scalable.

As per a recently collated research report, the global nonwoven cleanroom apparel market size is slated to rise at an exponential growth rate by 2026.

Global demand for face masks

Annual revenue from face masks in the nonwoven cleanroom industry is likely to reach a prominent growth rate. This can be mainly attributed to their incessant demand across the globe particularly in the present COVID-19 pandemic on account of their lower cost and higher utility to curb the spread of the infection. The multilayer construction of the nonwoven face masks helps to provide effective protection against microorganisms.

Protection of medical equipment

Application of nonwoven cleanroom clothing across the medical equipment sector will reach significant revenue. This is owing to their optimum efficiency and user protection like high tearing and abrasion resistance as well as excellent barrier-providing abilities.

The fabrics also offer better comfort & feel, high-level vapor transmission, air permeability, and good cross-contamination control. Taking note of these factors, the nonwovens are most suited for wound-caring components like bandages, absorbent pads, and drug-delivery devices, and in many other types of medical equipment across ICUs, labs, and operating rooms.

Potential in the pharma industry

Nonwoven cleanroom apparel uses across the pharmaceutical sector will gain considerable traction due to their rising preference to filter the human-dispensed contamination in pharma applications. As the fabrics are derived from lightweight, low-threading as well as durable polyethylene and polyester fibers, they are affordable and suitable for single use. They are environment friendly and are hence excessively used across sterile operating facilities to counter contamination concerns while rendering high comfort and protection.

Nonwoven cleanroom apparel suppliers are working towards novel product launches as well as marketing strategies like partnerships, and acquisitions, to broaden their reach across the untapped regions in the world. They are keen on capacity expansions to sustain competition. For instance, in June 2020, Kuraray Co., Ltd., expanded its production of melt-blown nonwoven fabrics to cater to the increasing consumer requirements for mask filters.

Kimberly-Clark Corporation, Clean Air Products, DowDuPont Inc., Azbil Corporation, Connect 2 Cleanrooms Ltd., Dynarex Corporation, and Labconco Corporation some of the other global product manufacturers in the industry.

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Spunbonded Fabric to Remain in the Mix for PP Nonwovens Market

Technical advancements in nonwoven processing and fabric finishing have prompted leading companies to expand their penetration in the global staples PP nonwovens market. Nonwovens have become one of the most prevalently used textile products in an ocean of end-use industries, including feminine hygiene, baby diapers, wipes, automotive, medical, industrial, and geotextiles.

As the demand for polypropylene nonwovens soars for wet filtration in the pharmaceutical and chemical industries, PP spun-bonded fabrics have become immensely popular in geotextiles, diaper linings, and agriculture. Spunbonded nonwovens have gained ground for the outer layer of a range of medical masks which are breathable and can protect the inner layer maintaining the mask integrity.

Geotextile makers are profoundly favoring staple PP nonwoven owing to greater flexibility, latitude, and higher tear resistance under impact load. Globally, staples PP nonwovens market size is estimated to grow at a considerable rate by 2026.

Traction for meltblown PP nonwovens has become noticeable in manufacturing products in the automotive, medical, personal hygiene, and electrical and electronics sectors. Pressing use of polypropylene nonwoven fabric made from chemical or thermal web bonding has mustered up the confidence of meltblown nonwovens manufacturers.

Amidst the COVID-19 fallout, staple PP nonwoven fabric in surgical masks with high bacterial filtration efficiency has surged in traction. Not to mention, the middle layer of surgical gowns made of meltblown polypropylene has gained impetus among the masses.

Medical industry players have exhibited increased traction for nonwovens for superior efficiency, better protection, increased performance, and less potential for cross-contamination. Nonwoven textiles will continue to play a pivotal role in the manufacturing of medical products, including dressings, surgical pads, implantable textiles, and filtration materials.

The emergence of nonwovens has triggered the development of a cost-effective alternative and can minimize the problem of cross-contamination immensely. Staples PP nonwovens are expected to be the material of choice for several wound care and surgical applications.

ExxonMobil joined hands with the Nonwoven Institute (NWI) in May 2020 to help rev up face mask production for front lines amidst the pandemic. Reportedly, NWI is supplying the meltblown and spunbond nonwoven fabrics to medical masks’ manufacturers. ExxonMobil is said to have donated around 146,00 pounds of PP and PP-based performance polymers to NWI.

SABAIC teamed up with Fibertex Personal Care in October 2020 to come up with nonwovens using recycled plastics. They claim it to be what they call the world’s first nonwovens range based on recycled plastic in the hygiene market. SABAIC’s circular polypropylene is all set to be used to make the new nonwovens, while they assert the new material could be used as a drop-in solution for keeping up with consumer safety and purity.

The automotive sector has become one of the major revenue-generating hubs following the trend for lightweight cars with aesthetics and improved comfort. Prevalence of staples PP nonwovens in the construction and design of transportation means, including trains, airplanes, boats, satellites, and spacecraft has augured well for the industry size expansion.

Expanding penetration of PP nonwovens in car components, including fuel filters, air filters, doors, seats, and trims has triggered growth in the landscape. It is worth noting that the footfall of nonwoven fabrics will remain pronounced to meet the demand for non-flammable textiles.

Nonwovens that improve acoustical performance and boost weight reduction are likely to remain in the mix, with the use of polypropylene nonwovens fostering sound absorption at lower frequencies to reduce weight, cost, and interior noise levels.

Industry players are expected to infuse funds in North America staples PP nonwovens industry following the roll-out of PP nonwoven surgical masks to combat coronavirus. The medical sector is touted to be one of the major recipients of PP nonwovens. With the footprint of nonwovens in automotive sectors in the U.S. become more palpable than ever before, stakeholders project a bullish outlook in the region.

Asia Pacific is expected to be a major consumer of nonwovens in the wake of the growing popularity of meltblown and spun-bonded fabrics in hygiene, medical and furniture applications. A notable uptick in the birthrates in emerging economies in the region has accentuated the demand for diapers and hygiene products, auguring well for leading companies vying to bolster their footholds in APAC.

Considering the trend for staples PP nonwovens among end-markets, new entrants are likely to be witnessed in the next five years. The presence of advanced healthcare systems in North America, Europe, and APAC will be a growth-stimulator, while stakeholders will potentially emphasize sustainability and innovation-focused trends.