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Editorial: The 2010 Polyolefin Gold Rush Could Benefit Technical Textile Producers
published in Issue 77, 2nd quarter 2009
The global structure of polypropylene and polyethylene production is poised to change dramatically as capacity rises in China and soars in the Middle East. As a result, the shares of Western Europe and the USA are set to fall substantially.
The change in production structure will come about because the manufacture of propylene and ethylene—which are the main raw material feedstocks for polypropylene and polyethylene polymer—is to start in the Middle East on a large scale. Also, large-scale production of the polymers themselves is about to begin.
Polypropylene and polyethylene fibres and filaments are used in a wide variety of technical textiles for agriculture, automotive, building and construction, hygiene, leisure, medical, outdoor and packaging applications. Specific end uses include active wear, artificial grass, bale wrapping, ballistic materials, bedding, carpet backing, car seating, diapers, disposable wipes, filter fabrics, fishing nets, flexible intermediate bulk containers (FIBCs), furniture, geotextiles, ropes and twines, sportswear, strapping, thermal underwear, upholstery and wall coverings.
Polypropylene and polyethylene filaments are normally produced by melt spinning. In this process, polymer granules—usually made by specialist producers rather than fibre companies—are fed to an extruder, which melts the polymer and then pumps it through a spinneret. Filaments are formed, and cooled in an air stream before being wound on a package or collected as a tow. In many cases coloured pigments are added to the polymer stream before extrusion because polypropylene and polyethylene fibres are difficult to dye.
Four times a year, Technical Textile Markets provides an overview of the global man-made fibre, nonwoven and technical textile industries. It provides market data and analysis of new and established markets for technical textiles, and is essential reading for senior executives in (or supplying) the man-made fibre, nonwoven and technical textile sectors – as well as for those who are not involved in the industry on a day-to-day basis, but who need an authoritative source which helps them to quickly gain an understanding of the key issues facing the companies which are actively involved in this fast-growing sector.
Reports in Technical Textile Markets include:
company and country profiles – giving you the opportunity to learn from strategies employed by others, in terms of production, sourcing, import/export, infrastructure and development, and plans for the future.
profiles of the world's top 40 producers of nonwovens – updated each year with details of developments from each of the leading producers, including acquisitions, investments and divestments, and analyses of trends which the "rising stars" are using to their advantage.
statistical reports – including consumption data, by fibre and end-use applications. Regular updates are published for fibre consumption in Japan, the rest of Asia, the USA, and Western Europe.
market sector information – analyses of important commercial end-user applications, and profiles of both established and emerging markets which take into account such innovations and developments as nanotechnology and intelligent textiles.
regular updates on innovations in fibres, technical textiles, apparel and machinery – including developments in the following categories: fibres and yarns; technical textile fabrics for industrial applications; machinery; technical textiles for apparel; composites; other technical textile products; and technical textile treatments and finishes.
reports on new technological developments and other topical issues – with clear, authoritative comments on their economic and commercial significance. The reports bring to your attention the key issues which you can use to develop your business, and provides contact details of useful organisations.
So whether you are involved in man-made fibres, nonwovens or technical textiles – in manufacturing, converting, import/export, or end use – or if you are in education or consultancy or investment or finance – a subscription to Technical Textile Markets will tell you what you need to know about the key trends in the industry.
Technical Textile Markets is available on subscription – either in printed format only, or in printed and electronic format. If you choose the printed only option, you will receive 4 printed publications a year. Each issue contains five research-based reports (see above) and an editorial.
Electronic supplement If you choose the printed and electronic option, you will receive an extra service. You will still receive each issue in printed format, delivered to you by traditional post.
In addition, you will be able to download PDF files containing the same information – but the PDF files will be available immediately on publication, so you don’t have to wait for the printing and mailing. You also have all the benefits of electronic files: instant access even when you are away from the office; convenient storage in your PC or laptop; portability; electronic search facility; and copy/paste facility.
You will also receive a monthly update of business news, called "Technical Textiles Business Update" delivered to you by email, free of charge.
Technical textiles are used in a wide range of end-use applications and markets, including agricultural; automotive; building/ construction/ engineering; medical and hygiene; packaging; protective clothing; sports and sportswear; and transport. A subscription to Technical Textile Markets will support your decision making, and provide the information you need to expand into new markets.
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