Americhem, a designer and manufacturer of custom color masterbatch, functional additives, engineered compounds and performance technologies, recently expanded its additive softening technology platform. Its mBrace products provide an enhanced soft feel while offering efficient processing with extremely low volatiles. Most of the mBrace line can be used as a single additive package or combined with color for an all-encompassing concentrate solution.
The mBrace line of masterbatches is multifaceted and engineered to offer brand owners customizability to their desired softness level in polypropylene applications. Americhem continues to broaden its formulations for nonwovens; improving softness and drapability.
Robert Baldy, market manager at Americhem, says: “Hygienic and medical drapery manufacturers have been looking for a cost-efficient way to bring a silky, soft touch to their products. The end user prefers a soft feel directly on their skin as opposed to an article that is stiff, noisy, and feels like plastic. You will feel the difference in the product with our mBrace.”
Omnova Launches Tribute Technology Platform
Omnova Solutions has introduced the new Tribute technology platform to enhance wipes performance and deliver differentiated features in cost-effective and environmentally friendly ways. The new technology platform combines a unique finishing treatment and compatible specialized binders.
“Current popular web bonding technologies for wipes, such as spunlace and airlaid, do not themselves do enough to impart differentiated features that capitalize on the rapidly evolving wipes market,” says Makarand Gawade, global marketing manager – Nonwovens and Textiles Enhancements at Omnova. “In response, Omnova is introducing the Tribute technology platform that can enable thinner, softer, more absorbent, durable, lint-free wipes as well as significant advantages in substitution of substrate components without impacting performance.”
Omnova’s Tribute technology platform is a three-part solution that includes special Sunbond and Acrygen binders and the innovative SoftWick SF20 surface treatment. Sunbond improves dry/wet strength, helps create lint-free substrates, and provides reduced quaternary absorption. Acrygen improves softness, hand/feel and significantly improves abrasion resistance. SoftWick SF20 imparts best in class wicking performance, excellent hydrophilicity, and significantly improves liquid absorption capacity, while adding softness.
The technology platform is ideal for use on polypropylene, polyester, PLA, and multi-fiber component substrates, and it opens the door to substitution or rebalancing of substrate components.
“Current viscose market dynamics encourage substitution, however with reduced viscose content, spunlaced wipes may lose absorption capacity and softness. With SoftWick finishing treatment, a wipes producer would be able to reduce the quantity of viscose fibers and yet achieve similar or even improved performance,” says Gawade. “And because there is strong ionic compatibility between all the platform elements, the individual Omnova products can be used standalone or in tandem, based on the performance requirements.”
ExxonMobil Offers Range of Polymers, Tackifiers
ExxonMobil has developed an expanded portfolio of polymers, which enable customers to create innovative soft PP nonwovens, breathable and non-breathable backsheet films, soft-stretch elastic laminates and elastic nonwovens, and adhesives for hygiene and personal care products.
Its portfolio of performance PE polymers, including Exceed XP, Exceed and Enable performance PE polymers deliver thin, comfortable and secure breathable and non-breathable backsheet films. In addition, Achieve Advanced PP allows brand owners to rethink what’s possible by providing outstanding barrier properties and up to 15% higher fabric strength for nonwovens. Vistamaxx performance polymers, Escorez tackifiers, and ExxonMobil polypropylene resins, are also used extensively by converters and formulators around the world.
“Demand for hygiene and nonwoven products, which help enable modern living, is expected to experience healthy growth,” says Bhaskar Venkatraman, vice president, ExxonMobil Chemical. “New products, such as Exceed XP, Exceed and Enable performance polymers, highlight our commitment to meet those needs and continue to serve our customers growth.”
These polymers and tackifiers deliver exceptional performance advantages for a range of hygiene products including:
- PP Nonwoven fabrics that are soft, comfortable, leak-proof and strong. For spunbond and meltblown processes, Achieve Advanced PP, Vistamaxx performance polymers and ExxonMobil PP resins offer ease of processing, softness, strength, and improved barrier performance.
- Backsheet films which are thin, comfortable and secure. Exceed XP, Exceed and Enable performance PE polymers allow the creation of breathable and non-breathable backsheet films with excellent mechanical properties and downgauging opportunities.
- Soft-stretch elastic laminates and nonwovens that provide a better fit. Vistamaxx performance polymer-based solutions offer tailored elasticity that enable fit, comfort and discretion, while maintaining low odor.
- Adhesives that are stable and provide high bond strength. Vistamaxx performance polymers and the Escorez 5000 family of high-performance tackifiers deliver adhesives that are light in color and remain thermally stable from manufacturing to product use.
BASF is a leading supplier of chemicals for nonwoven formulations, providing end-to-end solutions that can enhance existing product performance and inspire innovative nonwovens for the future. BASF offers formulation expertise and a broad portfolio of binders, coatings, and additives for construction and industrial applications, including abrasives, ceiling and wall panels, coatings, filtration, glass insulation, masking tape and roofing.
BASF holds sustainability as a core value and leverages sustainable solutions that reach beyond chemistry to create safer communities and enduring customer partnerships. A recent innovation in sustainability includes Acronal 4888, a self-crosslinking styrene-acrylic binder used to bring strength to polyester roofing substrate produced from recycled plastic bottles. The unique properties of Acronal 4888 are especially beneficial in the production of asphalt shingles and build-up roof (BUR) membranes that require binding strength, flexibility, and the ability to stand up to hot asphalt.
To support sustainable production of high-performance nonwoven products, BASF also offers Acrodur water-based binders. Acrodur is for use with natural, synthetic and glass fiber nonwovens and can replace traditional formaldehyde-containing or solvent-based resins such as melamine, urea, and phenol formaldehyde across a wide range of applications. Acrodur’s thermosetting resin technology not only optimizes finished product performance, but also allows manufacturers to supply low-VOC emitting products, supports indoor air quality (IAQ), and helps to reduce plant emissions.
Pulcra Chemicals Expands Offerings
Pulcra Chemicals is a leading developer and manufacturer of innovative specialty chemicals for the fiber, nonwoven and textile industries. Pulcra has developed two new products that offer an alternative to fluorine repellents.
Stantex Rep T is an effective low-cost wax repellent that can be used in the critical hygiene market. The product can be sprayed or padded onto a nonwoven. Meanwhile, Repellan V5 is an acrylic repellent that offers excellent durable water repellency for all fiber types. The product requires no curing.
In addition to these new products, Pulcra has a vast array of testing equipment that supports the hygiene market, such as liquid strike through, rewet test, and the nonwoven runoff test.