NatureWorks LLC, the Minnetonka, Minn.-based manufacturer of biopolymers derived from plant sugars
and offered under the Ingeo™ brand, now offers two grades of Ingeo bioresins for use in meltblown
nonwovens applications including filters and wipes. With the addition of the new grades to the
Ingeo product range for nonwovens applications, a comprehensive range of Ingeo fabrics can be
produced using all primary nonwoven fabric-forming processes, according to the company.
Tests conducted at Greenville, Wis.-based meltblown machinery manufacturer Biax-FiberFilm
Corp. have shown the two new grades, 6252D and higher-viscosity grade 6201D, are suitable for a
variety of applications. The company reports its meltblowing lines feature a unique high-pressure
die design that enables processing of higher-viscosity grades and production of fabrics exhibiting
greater strength than can be achieved using conventional meltblowing machinery.
“Our development of an Ingeo meltblown substrate significantly broadens the variety of
applications in which this material can be used,” said Doug Brown, president, Biax-FiberFilm. “An
Ingeo meltblown nonwoven offers an estimated 30 to 50 percent cost savings over conventional
fiber-based nonwoven roll goods and a significant advantage in price stability compared to
petroleum-based products.” He added that Ingeo meltblown fiber can be mixed with wood pulp or
viscose to provide significantly increased absorption properties for applications such as
In addition, Ingeo’s suitability for use in nonwoven substrates produced on conventional
meltblowing equipment has been evaluated by researchers at the University of Tennessee Nonwovens
Research Lab, Knoxville, Tenn.
“As interest grows in polymers made from renewable resources, equipment manufacturers,
process developers and researchers have been exploring solutions that offer meltblown nonwoven
fabrics that both perform well and achieve a lower carbon footprint than the existing
petroleum-based incumbents,” said Robert Green, director of fibers and nonwovens, NatureWorks.
According to NatureWorks, production of Ingeo produces significantly fewer carbon dioxide
emissions and requires significantly less energy usage than production of polypropylene or
September 22, 2009