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Technical Fibre Products (TFP) has been manufacturing nonwovens for nearly 30 years. The company was founded in 1986 as a wholly owned subsidiary of James Cropper plc, a speciality papermaking and advanced materials group established in 1845. TFP was formed by James Cropper with the strategic intention to diversify the group’s portfolio by manufacturing nonwovens from engineered fibers such as carbon, glass, aramid, thermoplastics or metal coated fibres. The wetlaid nonwoven production method is based around two speciality forming machines and one pilot line facility, all derived from papermaking technology developed by James Cropper plc. This unique and proprietary process is the key to achieving the degree of customisation and flexibility possible in TFP’s nonwovens. Enabling TFP to offer both the broadest range of nonwovens in the world and the capability to adapt these materials to meet customer specific performance requirements. Applications for these materials range from surface engineering of composites and fire protection to thermal insulation and power storage.
TFP’s new recycled carbon range is the result of a long term investment in the development of the expertise and technology necessary to process carbon fibre which has been recycled from various manufacturing processes and composite structures. This capability has been updated during the last nine years through working alongside partners in a range of industries. The result is the capability to manufacture recycled carbon fibre veils and mats which offer comparable properties and quality to those manufactured with virgin fibre, with the added benefit of environmental sustainability. TFP’s recycled carbon nonwovens can be produced from fiber reclaimed from processing or composite structures and can be integrated back into a composite as a surfacing or semi-structural layer. This ultimately provides a viable route for the recycling of fibres previously considered as waste and offers a means to close the loop on composite recycling and re-use.
TFP has always recognized the need to continually innovate and extend current process capability. In addition to developing the technology and expertise to produce recycled carbon materials TFP has also manufactured the world’s lightest carbon veil at 2 gsm, developed a new range of thermoplastic mats and veils and recently commissioned a flat bed laminator with powder scatter capability. The latter enables TFP to increase material functionality through bonding of multi-layer structures, powder addition and compression of substrates.
TFP’s nonwovens are used across a variety of industries ranging from aerospace and defence to automotive, energy, industrial, construction and healthcare. Of these markets there has been greatest interest in the recycled carbon nonwovens from the aerospace and automotive markets. In both markets the nonwoven can be incorporated into composite components (such as interiors) as a semi-structural or surfacing layer, enabling integration of recycled material. In some cases this can help to fulfill legislative requirements.
Headquartered in the U.K., TFP operates from three sites worldwide—a head office located in Burneside, a U.S. facility in Schenectady, NY and a converting facility based in Crewe, Cheshire.
TFP first expanded outside of the UK in 1991 with the opening of a U.S. sales office. Our manufacturing capability was extended in 2003 with the addition of an in-house metal-coated fibre production facility, Electro Fiber Technologies LLC and subsequent creation of Metal Coated Fibers Inc in 2007. In 2012 these three subsidiaries were consolidated into a single facility based in Schenectady, NY.