Seshadri Ramkumar, Texas Tech University, USA
Nonwoven sector is a growth industry. According to recent statistics, the global nonwoven industry has registered a growth of 6.9 percent. Speaking with this scribe yesterday, Brad Kalil, director of market research and statistics at the Cary-based INDA, Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry presented a growth picture for the sector. On production terms, United States accounts for 30% of global production at roll goods (fabric) stage accounting about US$13.7 billion in value. The value at roll goods stage globally will be about US$50 billion. When this scribe started promoting the nonwoven sector in India in 2006, the global nonwovens sector at roll goods level was valued at US$30 billion.
Nonwoven’s field lends itself to constant research and innovation. The Nonwovens Engineers and Technologists (NET) division of TAPPI will be showcasing new developments in the field in the forthcoming NETInc 2019 conference to be held this May in conjunction with the world’s leading paper conference (PaperCon 2019) in Indianapolis. Over 1000 participants have already registered for the PaperCon event. Larry Montague, president of TAPPI commented, “this year’s event will showcase best practices for now, and ideas for the future to drive the industry forward.”
The nonwoven conference will kick-off with keynote presentations. Andrew Aho, vice-president of new business development at Industrial Fabrics Association International will provide insights on the United States’ advanced textiles market and outlook for the future. Amit Kapoor, president and CEO of First Line Technology, will focus his talk on nonwovens commercialization pathways. First Line has transitioned nonwoven wipe, “FiberTect,” into defense markets.
With heightened awareness on plastic contamination, papers on bio-based oil absorbing nonwovens, antibacterial cotton products and developments in nanocellulose research will be presented. The conference has attracted good mix of papers from industry and academia on varied themes such as innovative filter media, foam finishing, biodegradable wool felts, etc. Gaurav Pranami, vice president R & D at Imbed Biosciences, stated, “with 22 talks on the latest R&D in the field of nonwovens from industry and academia and national and international participants, NETInc 2019 is the conference to be.” More details about the event is at: http://netincevent.org/program/technical-program/