Diamond Wipes Internationals’ Hero Wipes, Won the Wipes Innovation Award

INDA, the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, reports its 12th annual World of Wipes® (WOW) International Conference June 5-8 successful in connecting 440 participants advancing their business in wipes.

The event was highlighted with an industry and committee majority vote announcing Diamond Wipes Internationals’ Hero Wipes as the recipient of this year’s World of Wipes Innovation Award®. The innovative new wipe removes toxic, cancer-causing carcinogens from firefighters’ skin. Other finalists were Solugen, Inc.’s Ode to Clean Wipes made entirely from plant starch, and National Wiper Alliance’s Rhino Wipe™ Tote System, a portable container for easy dispensing of heavy duty Rhino Wipes.

The annual award recognizes the product that most expands the use of nonwovens and demonstrates creativity, novelty, uniqueness, and technical sophistication within the entire nonwovens wipes value chain.

Held at the Sheraton Grand, Chicago, Illinois, the event attracted participants from 22 countries representing the entire wipes supply chain to examine issues and advances in the growing multi-billion dollar growing wipes sector.

Opening the conference was consumer psychologist Kit Yarrow, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus, Golden Gate University, presenting psychological insights and strategies for marketing to Gen Z. The program also included sessions centered on consumer trends and market data, sustainability, substrate innovation, challenges with preservatives, regulations, packaging, institutional wipe trends and progress on flushable wipes testing procedures.

Participants connected face-to-face with hundreds of wipes professionals during the Welcome Reception atop the 95th floor in the John Hancock Building.

Preceding the conference, INDA’s Wipes Academy was conducted by instructor Rob Johnson, PE, Principal, Smith, Johnson & Associates. The Academy is the first and only comprehensive wipes training for the entire wipes supply chain.

“This year’s program content hit the mark in addressing key issues facing wipes producers and marketers. WOW serves as the hub for international wipes professionals to convene and connect, and the buzz this year indicates this happened in abundance,” said Dave Rousse, INDA president.

ANDRITZ Successfully Starts Up a NeXline Needlepunch Line to Autoneum

ANDRITZ has successfully started up a complete neXline needlepunch line for the production of needlepunched velour felts for the automotive market at Autoneum’s plant in San Luis Potosí, Mexico.

The line has a working width of 4.4 m and produces fabrics from 300 to 800 gsm for carpet systems, inner dashes, and floor insulators.

The scope of supply includes a Dynamic eXcelle Link card and a crosslapper in combination with ANDRITZ technology for drafting and needling. ANDRITZ also supplied the process control equipment as well as the unique, closed-loop ProDyn system, thus providing continuous web monitoring and optimization of the end product. With the inline, double-velouring needleloom, model SDV-2+2, and a maximum speed of 10 m/min, the production capacity of the ANDRITZ needlepunch line is in excess of 1,200 kg/hr.

This order once again demonstrates the strong and long-term partnership between ANDRITZ and Autoneum. Autoneum already operates several ANDRITZ lines in Bloomsburg, PA, and Jeffersonville, IN, both USA, as well as several lines in Europe and Asia.

Autoneum, with headquarters in Winterthur, Switzerland, is a globally leading supplier in acoustic and thermal management for vehicles. The company develops and produces multifunctional, lightweight components and systems for interior floors and engine bays as well as the underbody. Customers include almost all automobile manufacturers in Europe, North and South America, Asia, and Africa. Autoneum operates 55 production facilities and employs more than 12,000 people in 25 countries.

R2G, Acquired First Quality’s U.S. And China Nonwovens Businesses

R2G, a family office based in Prague, Czech Republic which owns majority interest in PEGAS NONWOVENS a.s., and First Quality Enterprises, Inc. today announced that the two companies have entered into a definitive agreement under which R2G will acquire 100% of First Quality’s nonwovens operations in the United States and China. The transaction, which is subject to customary closing conditions, is expected to be completed early in the third calendar quarter of 2018.

R2G’s nonwovens business Pegas Nonwovens a.s. is a leading producer of nonwoven textiles with operations in Europe and Africa. The acquired operations will continue, post transaction, to supply nonwovens to First Quality’s U.S. absorbent hygiene division; which manufactures premium infant care, adult incontinence, and feminine hygiene products for the retail and health care markets. This strategic acquisition will expand R2G’s presence into North America and Asia and will act as a fantastic platform for growth in these two important markets.

Michal Smrek, Chief Executive Officer of R2G said, “We believe strongly in the nonwovens business. This transaction will enable us and our group companies to support our global customers across four continents. Post transaction, we will have state-of-the-art production facilities and unrivalled know-how and R&D expertise to ensure that our customers benefit from the premium products we offer and the joint innovation and synergies that this combination will bring. When we acquired PEGAS, we said that this was the first step to building a global platform. This transaction is the second step and we look forward to now investing into our global platform and the people that have made the production companies a success.”

Jim Dodge, Chief Financial Officer of First Quality Enterprises said, “In the past 21 years, we have built First Quality Nonwovens into a global leader in the nonwovens industry through strategic investments, strong product development, and differentiation; with full commitment to our workforce, customers, and our communities in Hazleton, Pennsylvania and Wuxi, China. We are very pleased to pass along this legacy to a company which shares our principles and values. While it is extremely difficult to part with our nonwovens division and the fantastic team members that work there, we are pleased that, following the completion of the transaction, they will be part of the R2G family of nonwovens companies with similar core values as the First Quality Group.”

Archroma Joins Hands With Lahore University To Foster Innovative Research In Textiles

Archroma, a global leader in color and specialty chemicals, announced it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the University of Engineering & Technology (UET), Lahore, Pakistan. The MoU will pave way for cooperation initially for a five-year period.

The partnership will explore innovations in textile research with futuristic visualization for Pakistan to help the Pakistan textile industry to keep in line with the fast pace of global apparel requirements and evolutions. Both partners will jointly hold sessions to prepare students for the challenges of the textile industry through in-house training sessions, developmental projects, research in textile applications and process innovative methodologies by pioneering value additions. The students of UET will also be able to join internship placement programs at Archroma Center of Excellence at Karachi.

The MoU was officially signed at a ceremony recently held in Faisalabad by Prof. Dr. Fazal Ahmed Khalid, Vice Chancellor of UET and Mujtaba Rahim of CEO Archroma Pakistan Limited.

Speaking at the occasion, Mujtaba Rahim said: “We, at Archroma, believe in continuous improvement and challenging the status quo leading to enhance sustainable growth especially in our product lines creating value for our stakeholders. Through this initiative of mutual cooperation, we will be able to share latest knowledge and technical developments and to work together with the faculty and research team of UET. We also wish to share the innovative textile solutions of Archroma with the students enabling them to enhance their academic performance. Our MoU will go a long way in adding value in the fast growing textile segment, from education to R&D development.”

“This partnership is going to have far-reaching impact in textile research which will bear highly positive results for UET and Archroma. Our academic team has already collaborated with Archroma on projects that will have a far reaching impact on the textile industry. We are very enthusiastic about formalizing our mutual relationship and look forward to interesting research outcomes. Industrial liaison of students will create confidence and the training, internships and working sessions will benefit them in their career development,” Prof. Dr. Fazal Ahmed Khalid commented.

Mahlo-Solutions in Demand for Technical Textiles

Leading German machine builder for automatic weft straighteners and online quality control systems Mahlo GmbH + Co. KG is showcasing at upcoming CINTE Techtextil from 4 to 6 September in Shanghai. The show is considered to be one of the most important trade fairs for technical textiles and nonwovens in Asia.

Mahlo informs with its China representative Frank Fei about the latest developments in measuring and controlling of quality critical parameters within the running web. The centerpiece, almost everything revolves around at the Mahlo booth, is the web gauging system Qualiscan QMS-12. “The tool gauges

parameters such as basis weight, thickness or moisture across the entire width”, Frank Fei explains. To achieve this, up to five sensors are traversing simultaneously on sturdy scanners, constantly collecting data and transmit them to the interface. In use are radioactive sources as well as infrared, laser, microwaves and air permeability sensors.

“At CINTE, we anticipate a strong interest in our infrared sensor Infrascope NIR”, so Fei. Particularly for nonwoven producers in the spun lace industry – an emerging sector in Asia – the sensor is the ideal tool. It measures the absorption of infrared energy while identifying basis weight and moisture at the same time. Those important parameters can be measured and controlled precisely in a spun lace unit. Due to a very high spectral resolution, the sensor can distinguish between components with very similar IR absorption. This capability allows the highly selective individual measurement of a specific component or layer in the web without interference from other components. And all without the use of radioactive isotopes. With the Qualiscan QMS, not only the product quality is improved but also raw materials can be saved.

European Nonwovens Producution Grows 4.3% in 2017

EDANA disclosed the results of the annual nonwovens industry survey. Providing a comprehensive overview of the sector, the latest statistics demonstrate the industry’s drive and durability.

In 2017, nonwovens production in Greater Europe increased in volume by 4.3% to reach 2,544,450 tonnes with a total estimated turnover of around €7,869 million (+5.6%). Total European Union output is now close to 2 million tonnes.

Jacques Prigneaux, EDANA’s Market Analysis and Economic Affairs Director elaborated “we continue to see the expected variances within the EU region. Although some established players like France and the Benelux countries were at a standstill, many pushed on from last year with Greece, Romania, Czech Republic, Slovenia, the UK and Ireland all witnessing growth. In Greater Europe as a whole, the standout performers were Turkey, posting a double-digit growth rate, and Russia, where growth exceeded 9%.”

Divergent trends were also observed between the various production processes. Wetlaid production recorded the most important growth rate (+10.2%), mainly due to newly installed lines going fully operational in 2017. This type of web-formation now represents 9% of nonwovens produced in Europe.

Short-fibre airlaid nonwovens production increased marginally by 1.3% in 2017. The production of polymer-based nonwovens (spunmelt and assimilated) recorded significant growth of 4.2% in tonnage and 4.3% in sqm. This type of fabric confirmed its leading position in the European nonwovens industry, with 41.0% of the market in weight and 65.0% in surface area.

The total output of spunmelt products reached 1,056,494 tonnes (48,448 mio sqm) in 2017. Drylaid nonwovens reached 1,056,742 tonnes, representing a 3.6% increase in tonnage.

Main End-Use For Nonwovens Continues to be the Hygiene Market

Although the primary main end-use for nonwovens continues to be the hygiene market, with a 29.8% market share by weight, significant growth areas for nonwovens were recorded in other sectors; medical (+13.2%), automotive (+13%) and electronic materials (+21%).  Nonwovens sales to the personal care wipes market, flat in 2016, increased again last year posting growth of 5.4% in tonnes and 5.7% in surface area.

Jacques Prigneaux added “the whole EDANA team would like to thank participating companies for their valued input to our annual survey. This data, combined with continuous monitoring of the industry, ensures EDANA statistics are a valuable planning and benchmarking tool for all our member companies.”

Pierre Wiertz, General Manager of EDANA said “for over 40 years, the annual EDANA statistics – the most comprehensive available –  have proved a vital source of business intelligence for our member companies, offering unparalleled insight into the industry thanks to direct input from producers and exhaustive intelligence.”

Integration Time Between Archroma and M.Dohmen

Archroma, a global leader in color and specialty chemicals, announced the further integration of M. Dohmen, an international group specializing in the production of textile dyes and chemicals for the automotive, carpet and apparel sectors.

This went into effect on May 1, 2018 and follows Archroma expanding its stake in M. Dohmen from 49% to 75% in September 2017. The increased integration will be implemented in North America and Korea. In North America, 20 employees from M. Dohmen USA, Inc joined Archroma.

In Korea, Archroma recently acquired 100% of the shares of M. Dohmen Korea Ltd. The company’s name has been changed to Archroma Korea Ltd on April 30, 2018, and its 75 employees will now work under the Archroma brand.

“The further integration of M. Dohmen into Archroma will enable us to strengthen our offerings to textile markets worldwide” explains Marcos Furrer, President Brand & Performance Textile Specialties and Innovation, Archroma. “Regardless of their location, our customers will continue to benefit from our broad and complementary product portfolios, our dedication to providing outstanding global customer service and our strong commitment to innovation and sustainability.”

Collaboration Between Archroma and WWF Pakistan for Sustainable Water Protection Solutions

Archroma, a global leader in color and specialty chemicals, today announced it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF Pakistan). The MoU paves the way for formal cooperation between the two institutions in Pakistan, leading to projects mainly related to water conservation in the textile industry there.

Both parties officially signed the MoU in a recent ceremony at the Archroma Center of Excellence in Karachi. The MoU will build strong ties between Archroma and WWF Pakistan’s initiatives in promoting sustainable practices within the textile industry using Archroma’s technical expertise toward zero liquid discharge, software simulations in production lines, and the Archroma ONE WAY Process Simulator tool, together with research methodologies in reducing water consumption and re-using water. Both institutions will jointly strive to raise awareness amongst the textile sector through training programs by introducing new process models with a futuristic approach.

Speaking at the occasion, Mujtaba Rahim, CEO, Archroma Pakistan Limited, said: “We at Archroma are very proud to join hands with WWF for a cause that is close to our heart, and we strongly believe that water conservation is the key to the sustainability of our industry. We believe in continuous improvement, and through this important initiative we are confident to improve upon the depleting water reserves, especially in Sindh. Water conservation by recycling and reuse will definitely save fresh-water reservoirs. The technical expertise of our team and enthusiasm of WWF Pakistan in conserving natural resources is an ideal partnership and we look forward to working on many projects in the future.”

“WWF Pakistan has a number of conservation projects to its credit. Currently, water is one of our major focus areas. The MoU with Archroma adds to our endeavor in water-saving measures. Our joint collaboration with the textile sector will definitely result in introducing production facility improvements”, commented Zahid Sultan Jadoon, Director Operations, WWF Pakistan.

The offices of Archroma Pakistan in Karachi are certified “Green Offices” and Archroma is a recipient of the prestigious “Eco Innovation Award” from WWF Pakistan. The Sustainable Effluent Treatment (SET) plant of Archroma at Jamshoro is a unique facility within the industry of textile dyes and chemicals manufacturing. It operates toward zero liquid discharge having 80% water recovery thus saving millions of liters of fresh water.

WPT Nonwovens Corporation Chooses A.Celli Nonwovens for its US Investment

The important US company WPT specialized in the production and sale of nonwoven products for a wide range of markets (consumer, filtration, industrial, medical), has allocated a 6-million dollar investment for a state-of-the-art production plant.

The installation of the line is earmarked for the first quarter of 2018 and the A.Celli supply, that in addition to the “Stream” Master Roll winding system also includes a Tandem Rewinder and a 6-Unit Spooling System, will be installed in the former Nestaway building, the company’s new facilities in Beaver Dam, Kentucky.

We’re excited that WPT Nonwovens chose Beaver Dam to grow their business“, states Paul Sandefur, the city’s Mayor. “Any time you have a business willing to make an investment in the community and add new jobs, it’s a good thing. Good news just keeps coming Beaver Dam’s way and that’s good for all Ohio County!

A.Celli Nonwovens S.p.A.

A.Celli Nonwovens offers a comprehensive range of Master Roll Winders and Slitter-Rewinders featuring state-of-the-art solutions customized to spunbond, spunmelt and spunlace products with a special focus on speed, preserving product characteristics.

The machinery range also includes ancillary technology such as automatic knives positioning, automatic core cutting, unwinders, spooling systems and multi-functional lines with printing systems.

In addition to its Italian facilities, the A.Celli Group is present in Istanbul, Turkey (A.Celli Turchia), in Shanghai (A.Celli Shanghai Machinery Co. Ltd.) in USA (A.Celli International Inc.).

ANDRITZ to Supply a Complete Needlepunch Line for Geotextiles to Manifattura Fontana

ANDRITZ has received an order from Manifattura Fontana, based in Valstagna, Italy, and part of the Belgian technical textile company Sioen Industries, to supply a neXline needlepunch eXcelle line for the production of geotextiles. Start-up of the line is scheduled for October 2018.

The scope of supply includes all of the machines from opening and blending to an automatic packaging system. The line incorporates cutting-edge ANDRITZ technologies and equipment, such as:

  • a TCF-X high-capacity chute feed capable of processing long staple fibers
  • an eXcelle card with 3.5 m working width
  • the state-of-the-art ProDyn and Isolayer systems for weight evenness
  • high-speed needlelooms with the innovative Zeta drafters to fine-tune tensile strength parameters and boost the production capacity for lightweight fabrics.

For the first time in Italy, the line will feature air-through bonding capabilities in combination with calendering. It is targeted to become the most productive line in Europe.

50 Years of Experience in the Nonwoven Sector

Manifattura Fontana joined Sioen Industries, a publicly listed Belgian company specialized in technical textile solutions, in 2016. It has been manufacturing nonwoven geotextiles from synthetic fibers for nearly 50 years and is developing new solutions and improved products for separation, filtration, protection, drainage, and reinforcement. Manifattura Fontana is a leading company in the global geotextile markets and provides its customers with added-value geotextiles for many applications, such as the construction of roads, railways, reservoirs, dams, and tunnels, as well as for earthworks, foundations, erosion control, drainage, waste disposal, or containment.