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Knowledge Creation

The Nonwovens Institute (NWI) views education, research, and outreach as critical components of its mission. Pre-competitive research falls in the Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 1-4 categories and is often titled “core” projects.  These research activities engage our network of faculty and students and are a means by which we train the future leaders for our industry.  Our graduates will be equipped with the knowledge and know-how required to succeed in the corporate environment, while the results of NWI research projects enable NWI member companies to innovate by finding solutions to some of our industry's grand challenges.

NWI’s research projects are only shared with current members of the NWI Consortium, and elements of these projects become public only after the student graduates.

Research topics are suggested by member companies – today, NWI has 5 research thrust areas (defined by our Strategic Scientific Advisory Board). These are:

  • Materials and Materials Characterization
    • what to use and how to analyze
  • Polymer Processing and Extrusion
    • how to make
  • Engineered Structures
    • what to make
  • Micro and Macro Modeling
    • structure-property-process modeling
  • Sustainability
    • how to recycle; what to use as an alternative source

Core projects are not designed to result in IP, and that is no accident. We focus on pre-competitive science and engineering, not product development, as part of our shared research activities. In our history from 1991, we have no more than 4 patents that have come about from our core research. This is a key element in our success – we are fulfilling our mission of knowledge generation, training future leaders for the industry and beyond in a shared environment without creating any unnecessary conflicts and without being focused merely on IP generation, spin-offs and the like. This model works – our network of competitors and the entire supply chain are at the table, and the research is focused on solving grand challenges that the industry as a whole faces. The IP will ultimately arise from how one would use the information generated from these research activities.

NWI research projects typically last 3 to 4 years, and students will be pursuing a Ph.D. during the project. NWI members participate as mentors/advisors on each project. NWI covers all expenses for the projects from its State allocation, membership dues and other discretionary funds. The results are shared with all members. IP is governed by the NWI Bylaws.

Our core programs are strongly focused on knowledge creation only and that has become the hallmark of how we manage our shared environment – all of our members contribute to the agenda, the discussions, the identification and, ultimately, the selection and stewardship of our core research agenda. This model works in a shared environment that has to be relevant but non-competitive and only if we achieve operational excellence in:

  • Transparent communications
  • Collaborative environment

If you have questions about NWI or our service offering, please contact us at

Recently Completed Projects:

Fundamentals of Thermal Point Bonding in Nonwovens
A Materials Data Management System for Nonwovens
Modeling of Mechanical Properties of Point-Bonded Fiberwebs
Studies on Uniformity of Fiberweb Basis Weight and Structure
Study of Forces Experienced by Individual Needles during Needlepunching
Study of Needlepunching Process and Products
Photometric Monitoring of Carding Element Loading
Thermally Bonded Cellulosic Nonwovens – II
Study of Needlepunch Products and Processes
Micromechanics of Three-dimensional Fiberweb Nonwovens : Constitutive Equations
Bond Strength and its Measurement in Nonwoven Fabrics
Tomographic Approaches to Nonwovens Structure Definition
Orientation Measurements in Fibrous Assemblies Using Image Analysis
Application of FAST System in Nonwovens
Chemomechanical Softening of Nonwovens
Heat Barrier Properties of Nonwoven Fabrics
Study of Carding Dynamics
The effect of Bonding Parameters on the Properties of Thermal Point Bonded Polypropylene
Constitutive Modeling of Spun Bonded Nonwovens
CIM in Nonwovens Manufacturing: Phase I. Application to Wet-Lay Web Forming Step
Tomography and Nonwovens
Development of Thermal Insulation for Textile Wet Processing Equipment Using Needlepunched Nonwoven Fabrics
Hydroentangling Investigations Using Bleached and Unbleached Cotton Cardwebs
Design and Characterization of Geotextiles for High Performance Applications
Shear Precipitated Chitosan Powders, Fibrids, and Fibrid Papers
Processing of Cotton and Cotton/Pulp Blends for Wet-laid Nonwovens using Novel Dispersion Technologies
Evaluation of a One-Bath Process for Imparting Repellency and Antimicrobial Activity to Nonwoven Surgical Gown and Patient Drape Fabrics
Probabilistic and Statistical Modeling for Geometric Structure of Nonwoven Fabrics
Hydroentangling Investigations Using Bleached and Unbleached Cotton Card Webs
Investigation of Thermal Bonding of Nonwoven Fiberwebs using IR Bonding
Simulation and Image Processing of Nonwoven Fabrics
Foamed Latex Bonding of Spunlace to Improve its Physical Properties
Carding Dynamics: The Assessment of Cross Machine Uniformity of Carded Webs (currently available members only)
Formation of Fiberweb from Staple Microfibers
Fundamentals of Fiber Bonding in Thermally Point bonded Nonwovens
Biaxial Tensile Testing of Nonwoven Textile Fabrics (on file NCRC)
Formation of 3D Meltblown Structures using Robotic Control of Fiber Deposition
Prediction of Performance in Thermally Point Bonded Nonwovens
The Effect of Processing Parameters on Mechanical Properties of Thermally Point Bonded PolyPropylene Nonwovens
Role of Fiber Morphology in Thermal Bonding
Stress and Structure Distribution in Thermally Point Bonded Nonwovens
Fiber Crimp and Crimp Stability in Nonwoven Fabric Processes
Fundamentals of Fiber in Water Dispersion
Combination of Hydroentanglement and Foam Bonding Technologies for Wood Pulp and Polyester Fibers in Wet Lay Nonwoven Fabrics
The Role of Fiber Finish in the Conversion of Fiber to Nonwovens
Fundamentals of Spin Finish on Fibers
The Impact of Input Energy, Fiber Properties, and Forming Wire on the Performance and Aesthetics of Hydroentangled Fabrics
Influence of Fiber Types on Fiberweb Properties in High Speed Carding
Intelligent Nonwovens:  Engineered Stimuli-Sensitive Absorbent Properties
In Plane Liquid Distribution in Nonwovens
The manufacturing of wet-laid hydroentangled glass fiber composites for industrial applications
Texture Classification in Hydroentangled Nonwovens
3D SpaceNetâ Structures from Nonwovens ****
Modeling Performance in Hydroentangled and Needled Nonwovens
Modeling Performance in Hydroentangled and Needled Nonwovens
The role of orifice design in hydroentanglement
Surgical Face Masks Barrier Effectiveness:  Influence of Construction and Finish
Biopolishing Cellulosic Nonwovens
An Investigation of the Role of Cavitation on the Degradation of the Orifice Shape and Intact Length of Hydroentangling Water Jets
Nanofiber Webs via Spunbonding and Meltblowing
Modeling of Air Flow and Heat Transfer in the Through-Air Bonding Process
Incorporating Carbon Nano Tubes into Fibers
Fundamentals of Melt-Spinning/Blowing Polymers Fabricated and/or Functionalized from Their Inclusion Compounds with Cyclodextrins
Flexible, Multi-layered Thermal Barrier Material
Inflluence of Material Variables in Thermal Bonding of Nonwovens
Method for Measuring Static Potential on Moving Fabrics
Simulating Liquid Flow Inside Nonwovens
Enzymatic Treatment of Cellulosic Fabrics
Modeling of the Hydroentanglement Process
Surface Modification of Fibers & Nonwovens with Melt Additives
Filtration by Micro and Nano fiber Filters: Simulation and Experiments
Structure-Process-Property Relationships in Nonwovens Made from Multi-Block Elastomers
Development of Interfacial Adhesion during Thermal Bonding of Nonwovens
Structure & Properties of Micro & Nano fibers
Printing Conductive Inks on Nonwovens
Acoustical Absorptive Properties of Nonwovens
Barrier Nonwoven fabrics with High Moisture Vapor Transfer Rate
Hollow fiber Nonwoven Structures with Interconnected Pore Configuration
Functional Nanofibers from Associative Polymers Using Electrospinning
On the Aerodynamics of Meltblowing Process: Modeling & Experimental Verification
The Influence of Staple Fiber Preparatory Equipment on Web Quality
Spreading and Deposition of Liquid Films and Drops in Fibrous Structures
Effect of Jet Strip Variables and Forming Wire on Fabric Quality
Modeling Calendered Fabrics and Their Permeability
Fundamentals of Fiber Formation in the Spun Bond Process
Consumer Acceptance of Nonwovens in Apparel & Accessories
Fluid Absorption Properties of Nonwoven Fabrics: Analysis of Real Geometries via DVI
Surface Modification with Fluorochemical Melt Additives
Durable, Electric Charge Storage or Dissipation in Nonwovens via Surface Modification
High Throughput of Staple Nanofibers via Assisted Electrospinnning
Mechanistic Understanding and Optimization of Thermal Bonding for Bicomponent Polymer Fibers
Electrospun Nanofibers of Enzymatically-modified Polysaccharide for Drug Delivery and Wound Healing
Abrasion Testing of Nonwovens
Flame Retardency of Nonwovens
Modeling Mechanical Properties of Nonwovens
Electrospun fibers for Drug Delivery
Modeling Flammability
High Performance Meltblown Nonwovens
The Generation and Stability of Organic Films on Polyolefin Surfaces
Simulating Multi-component Aerosol Filters via Geometrical Modeling and Volumetric Imaging
Mechanical properties of thermally bonded bicomponent fiber nonwovens: experimental study and micromechanics
Nonwovens Containing Novel Polymer Fillers
Enhanced Electrostatic Properties and Hydroentangling Efficiency via Atmospheric Plasma Pretreatment
Challenges in Atmospheric-Plasma Aided Grafting of Biocidal Agents to Nonwovens
Development of Nanoclay Modified Fibers and Nonwovens
Surface Engineering of Nonwoven Materials using Atomic Layer Deposition and Self-Assembled Nanolayers
Functional Coatings Based on Adsorption-Denaturation of Proteins
Electrospinning Yarn Formation and Coating
Polymer Based Drug Delivery Systems
Investigating the Bonding/Fiber-fracturing performance of Hydroentangling
High Throughput Melt Electrospinning of Nanofibers using Supercritical Carbon Dioxide
A study of how the microstructure of spunbond bicomponent filaments affects the properties of the fiber
Durable Nanolayer Graft Polymerization of functional Finishes Using Plasma
Electrostatic charged polymer filter media with melt additives
Investigating Polymer Interface and its Influence in Thermoplastic Bicomponent Structures for Nonwoven Composites
Mixed Media
Structure Property Process Relationships for Meltblowing
Structure Property Process Relationships for Meltblowing
Fabrication and Modeling of Conductive Nonwovens
Analysis of Basis Weight Uniformity of Micro and Nanofiber Nonwovens
Surface Modification of Nonwovens for bioseparations by Grafting Acrylate Derivatives
Hybrid Composite Liquid Filters
Functional Electrospun Nanofibers in the Development of Biocatalysts
Photovoltaic Polymer and Ceramic Nanocomposite Materials
Hybrid Woven/Nonwoven Composite for Protection
Transport of Small Molecules through Fibrous Materials
Melt-Spun Bi/Tricomponent fibers Exhibiting Shape Memory: A Mesoscale to Macroscale Experimental and Theoretical Study
Controlled Release Systems using Core-Sheath Nanofibers for Wound Healing and Tissue Engineering Applications
Deformation and Failure Mechanisms of Low-Density Nonwovens
Fundamental Study of Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Fibers in Filtration Media and Their Effect on Droplet Impact, Coalescence, and Penetration
Ion Exchanger Formation via Sulfonated Block Copolymer and Surface Modified Bicomponent Fibers
Structures of Needlepunch Fabrics and Needling Mechanism
Inorganic/Organic Hybrid Processes for Nonwovens
Multifunctional Sustainable Nonwovens
Fluid Absorption and Release of Nonwovens and their Response to Compression
Interconnected Micropores in Hollow Nonwoven Fibers
Novel Block Ionomer Fiber Coatings for Controlled Pore Size in Water Filtration
A Systematic Investigation of the Factors that Trigger Thermal Decomposition During the Processing of Industrially-Relevant Polymers
Structure-Property Relationships of Nonwovens Filled with Calcium Carbonate
Cellulose Nanocrystals as Additive and Reinforcing Agent in Melt-spinning of Polyethylene and Polypropylene
Development of anti-biofouling coatings on PET nonwovens for specific attachment of biological antibodies and for removal of heavy metals and toxins from waters
PVDF Multifunctional Microfiber Spunbond Nonwovens
PVDF Multifunctional Microfiber Spunbond Nonwovens
Micro- and Macro-Scale Modeling of Filter Aging: Effects of Particle Deposition on Filter Performance
Spinning Fibers below 50 nm
Behavior and Limitations of Novel Filler Loading in Polymeric Materials
New Nonwovens as Substrate for Leather
Conductive Nonwovens
Modeling of Meltblowing Processing Conditions
The First Predictive Theory to Estimate the Thickness and Porosity of Nanofiber Nonwoven Mats
Materials for Sensing and Analysis of Nonwoven Structures
Parametric Modeling of Compression Performance of Nonwovens
Surface Modification Material Platform via Coating Technology
Cold-Draw Shape-Memory Bi/Tricomponent Fibers: Elucidating the Polymer/Polymer Interface and Adding Sensory Functionality
Durable, Self-extinguishing, and Halogen-free Flame Retardants for Nonwovens
Permeability, Pore Size and Pore Volume in Nonwovens
Patent Intelligence for Nonwoven Technology Forecasting
Structure-Process-Property Relationship of Additive Loaded SpunBlown Nonwovens
Investigation of Bio-polymers and Their Associated Limitations/Applications
Conductive Materials Integration on Nonwovens
Heat Transfer During the Thermoplastic Nonwoven Molding Process
Superhydrophilic-Superoleophobic Membranes for Oil-Water Separation
Observation of Fiber-Fluid Hygrophobic Interactions with Liquid Cell TEM
Polymer-Polymer Interface
Quantifying the Major Factors Determining the Relationships between Fabric Properties, Forming Wire Design, Fiber Properties, and Process Conditions for the Meltblown and Spunbond Processes
Charging Mechanism for Enhanced Electret
Particle Doped Fibers Through Solution Spinning
Barrier Materials with high Moisture Vapor Permeability
High performance Nonwovens
High Surface Area Structures For Liquid Filtration
Permeability of Nonwoven Fabrics
Digital Printing & Finishing of Polyolefin Nonwovens
Investigation of Reactive Interphase to Strengthen Nanotube Composite Fibers
Techniques for Strengthening Polymer-Lignin Composite Fibers
Deactivation of Chemical Threat Agents by Calcium Carbonate Composite Membranes
Nanofibrous Membranes for Toxin Capture and Neutralization
Foam forming with complex synthetic fibers in the wetlay process
Engineering Interfaces between Graphene Oxide and Industrially-relevant Polymers for Conductive Composites
Biaxial Spin-Pack Design for Controlled Melt-Blowing Part II: Experimental study of Biax meltblown process and web structures
Tailored Surface Modification of Nonwovens using Fluorochemical Melt Additives
Nonwoven Nanodiamond-Polymer Nanofibers and Coatings
Capillarity of Nonwovens with Heterogeneous Wettabilities: Theory vs. Experiment

If you have questions about NWI or our service offering, please contact us at