Spun bonding is a popular method of developing polymer-induced nonwovens. Spun bond nonwovens consist of filaments developed by an integrated process of web formation, bonding and fiber spinning. Spun bonds skip the intermediate steps like staple formation, making it the shortest way to develop fabrics from polymers. This helps in increasing the product whilst reducing its cost.
The process of spun bonding is complex, and it includes operational parameters like die and polymer temperatures, polymer throughput, quenches environment, etc. It also includes material parameters like molecular weight, type of polymer. All these factors together influence the fiber structure, fiber diameter, tensile performance, web lay down and physical performance properties of spun bond fabrics.
Spun bond method offers excellent tensile characteristics with respect to the fabric weight. Also, subtle modifications in the production process like changing the cross-section, crimp or degree of bonding helps in producing the necessary property balance to satisfy the requirements of end-users.
A wide range of applications across various industries to stimulate the demand for spun bond nonwovens
Spun bond fabrics are found useful in many sectors like civil engineering, carpet backing and diaper linings. Some other applications of spun bond nonwovens include roofing, packaging, agriculture, electronics, coating substrate, etc.
Characteristics like high chemical stability, high elasticity, high barrier quality and high liquid absorbance. They are used for producing protective apparel like surgical coats, masks, and aprons owing to their excellent barrier protection characteristics.
Fabrics like geotextiles are produced using staple fibers due to their flexibility in choosing the polymer type and greater latitude. Also, with excellent extensibility, these fabrics can obtain higher tear resistance.
Polypropylene – the go-to polymer for nonwoven production
Polypropylene is the most common polymer to be used for producing spun bond nonwovens. They have a high melting point which proves beneficial in processing these fabrics. Their fibers can be softened enough to form a bond with other fibers without compromising their fibrous properties. This has eliminated the necessity of using chemical binders. It also saves energy and is environment-friendly. Baby diapers and other similar products largely use thermally bonded cover stock which can increase the usability of polypropylene.
Asia Pacific to emerge as a lucrative hub
Increased disposable income along with rapid developments in the personal care and hygiene sector has boosted the usage of spun bond nonwovens in Asia Pacific. Also, the rising birth rate has increased the demand for baby care products, thus stimulating the usage of nonwoven fabrics in the region.
Many industry players are expanding their business operations and strengthening their market positions through strategies like collaborations, product launches, etc. For instance, Avgol Nonwovens are relocating their current spun melt line from Israel to India. This shift was executed as part of a strategic investment in the country. The company is strategizing to expand its service and presence not only across India but throughout South Asia. Such business expansions will bolster the usage of spun bond nonwovens.