Fighting COVID-19 with Nonwovens—#Coronafighters

The Nonwovens Institute (NWI) at North Carolina State University is proactively responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Our aim is to fully leverage and fortify our facilities to produce facemasks that are desperately needed in the coronavirus fight. Join the fight and DONATE NOW.
The challenge in the USA and, indeed, the world is a shortage of both the most critical component – the meltblown nonwoven filtration media – and of the converting capacity to make a facemask.

Thus, with the full support of NC State, NWI is dedicating its meltblown and spunbond large scale pilot facilities and expertise to produce specially designed fabrics that can be delivered to USA manufacturers to assemble facemasks and is also investing in new converting equipment to locally assemble ready-to-use face masks for healthcare workers, and for public use. To learn more, please see the detailed description (*updated* 6/23/20) of face mask technologies and products by Dr. Behnam Pourdeyhimi, NWI Executive Director.

There are many opportunities for collaborators, partners, suppliers, and customers to engage in this fight by contributing to the needs for money, equipment, and materials as captured below.

What’s Needed and How You and Your Company Can Help


  • Cash Donation (online, check, wire transfer)
  • Equipment & Materials Donation


  • Investment support to scale-up nonwoven production, invest in new converting equipment, and increase capacity.
  • Equipment for production and maintenance, e.g., Reicofil Spare Parts for Production, nonwoven belts, SB and MB resins (polypropylene & PLA), forklifts, and product handling and storage equipment.


  • Accelerate time to full production of affordable facemasks that make a difference.
  • Ensures production reliability and resin supply for production.

If you have any questions, please contact nonwovens@ncsu.edu or Lorena McLaren, Executive Director of Corporate & Foundation Relations as lnmclare@ncsu.edu.

Learn More


How Will This Impact Normal Operations and Services at NWI During the Crisis?

NWI continues its efforts on forming filter media for facemasks to help in the current crisis.

We are monitoring the situation carefully and make a decision about how to hold the Fall IAB meeting soon.

Short courses will be offered online for the remainder of the year.  Details will be posted on our website shortly.

Access to facilities continues to be limited.  Starting on July 1, we will offer virtual trials on smaller lab equipment.  Clients cannot be present during these trials.  

  • 1.2-meter wide Meltblown pilot line: Dedicated to producing filter media for facemasks.  Limited virtual trials will be considered on a case by case basis.
  • 1.2-meter wide Spunbond Labs: Dedicated to producing filter media for facemasks.  Limited virtual trials will be considered on a case by case basis.
  • Analytical Lab: Open for business.
  • Staple/Carding Lab: Will reopen July 1 for limited trials.
  • Fiber Science Lab: Will reopen July 1 for limited trials.

Labs and full service will resume fully when possible.  We look forward to continuing to serve your needs.


NWI Expands Its Filtration Testing Capabilities



NWI has expanded its analytical capabilities and is offering services for testing and validation of filter media.  The additions include a new laboratory dedicated to testing masks and respirators.

read more


NWI Will Offer 2 Webinars in July



NWI will be offering two more webinars on facemasks, dedicated to testing and certification

read more


NWI Will Offer Online Training



NWI has offered training courses for the past 25 years on various topics.  Due to COVID-19, NWI will move from face-to-face on-site training to virtual on-demand online offerings.  These online training programs will not replace our regular offerings.  Normal in-class and hands-on training programs will resume when we return to normal.  The online training programs are intended to augment and expand the range of offerings on a variety of topics. There will be an announcement shortly.

read more

The Nonwovens Institute (NWI)

is the world’s first accredited academic program for the interdisciplinary field of engineered fabrics. Based at the Centennial Campus of NC State University in Raleigh, the NWI is an innovative global partnership between industry, government and academe.

Short Courses

There are no upcoming courses at this time. View All Courses

Upcoming Events

View All Events