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Nonwoven fabrics – what you need to know

Nonwoven fabrics – which are also simply known as nonwovens – are not just extremely versatile when it comes to their uses but also their production. Different processes result in different qualities that are suitable for various or specific applications.

Generally, we distinguish between natural fibres, such as cotton or hemp, and chemical fibres, such as polymers, polyester or fibre mixes.

When manufacturing nonwoven fabrics, there are different processes with which a pile can be formed:

  • the drylaid process: Pile formation through airlaying or willowing
  • the wetlaid process: Suspension of short fibres on a filter band
  • the spunbond process: Extrusion from granulates

Bonding the pile is the key to calendering the nonwoven fabric and has a major impact on the properties of the end product.

Mechanical bonding

Mechanical bonding takes place through needling, hydroentanglement or calendering. The corresponding nonwoven fabrics are used as filter media, padding, in medical applications (e.g. compresses), as coating carriers (e.g. in the shoe industry), in the automotive sector (e.g., back injection of nonwovens for interior components), in orthopaedics or as washing cloths.

Chemical bonding

Chemical bonding takes place by adding binding agents. These nonwoven fabrics are used for the filtration of liquids, in medical applications as carriers for plaster pads, surgery covers, coating carriers for the shoe industry as well as dry and wet wipes and in the cosmetics industry.

Thermal bonding

A thermal bond is created through heated rollers (calendering) or a hot airflow. Typical areas of application are nonwoven fabric covers or transfer nonwoven fabrics for female and baby hygiene products, incontinence products, moist lotion wipes, coating carriers or filter media.

We constantly refine our nonwoven fabric products in order to adapt their properties even better to customer requests. This not only applies to the material but also the bonding process. Nonwoven fabrics can thereby be made conducive, fire-proof, water-repellent, antistatic, air permeable, antimicrobial or absorbent. They can also be coated, printed on, flocked or tinted.

You have questions about nonwoven fabrics and their applications? Then contact us. We are the nonwoven experts.


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Product development

Do you need a very specific nonwoven fabric for implementing your idea? Then you have come to the right place. At imeco, we will support you in the implementation of your idea from the design of the product to shipping the finished product. Our experienced employees will assist you every step of the way and will also take care of tasks like regulatory, quality and permit requirements or manufacture your products according to your specifications using specially designed machines.

As a specialist for custom products consisting of and using nonwoven fabrics that are certified in accordance with DIN EN ISO 13485, at imeco, we will manufacture nonwoven medical products according to your requirements and the highest standards.

Custom, precise, top quality


We mainly get our nonwoven fabrics from well-known western European suppliers and process them according to your specifications and respective tasks. Whether it's a roll or a wipe, whether you want certain shapes or ways to fold them, whether you want them sewn or welded, we keep developing and always adapt to new requirements.

Our production also offers you added value. We provide you with all types of nonwoven fabrics that not only feature the highest quality but also come from a single source: With special add-ons, adaptations or even completely newly designed machines from our own machine fleet, we are able to quickly and flexibly implement your product ideas. Upon request, three of our plants also offer job order production.

We offer the following production capabilities:

  • Cutting
  • Seaming
  • Dampening
  • Filling
  • Packaging
  • Winding
  • Printing
  • Welding
  • Sewing
  • Punching

The imeco machine fleet


In order to take full advantage of the many uses of nonwoven fabric, we at imeco have a state-of-the-art machine fleet including our own design department. That allows us to always adapt to new technologies and to respond to your specific wishes.

Depending on the material properties or the product or packaging requirement, we will use the corresponding technologies for the production of your nonwoven product. This allows us to take care of every step in-house: from the initial product idea to the production machine. This also includes concept testing, sample production and the creation of process concepts.

We solely design machines for our own production and will therefore be able to implement your product ideas in a cost effective manner. Thanks to our in-house design department, we are extremely flexible when it comes to developing and refining our production machines and are able to quickly react to product changes dictated by the market.


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