Non-woven fabrics

Non-woven fabrics are by far the best known and most used geosynthetics. The range of applications for non-woven geotextiles in construction is as wide as the range of structures in which they are used. Depending on the type of non-woven fabric and its technical properties, it assumes the tasks of a separating, filtering and/or protective layer in building construction, civil engineering, road construction and traffic route construction. Non-wovens have also been an established building material in professional gardening and landscaping for many years.

As full-surface geosynthetics, non-woven fabrics belong to the product category of geotextiles. The most common products are mechanically bonded non-woven fabrics, usually made of polypropylene (PP) or polyester (PET). Here, fine filaments of continuous or staple fibres are compressed and bonded into a compact non-woven fabric by needle-punching. Mechanically bonded non-wovens are often thermally treated in an additional downstream production process. This reduces the material thickness of the non-woven, resulting in smaller roll dimensions and a stiffer product.

The different production methods are also associated with different product properties. Due to their regular filament structure, purely mechanically bonded non-wovens have an excellent filtering effect and protective effect. They also adapt well to the contours of the substrate due to their good elongation properties. Thermally post-treated non-wovens have the advantages of improved robustness and higher tensile strengths with the same mass per unit area.

There is a wide range of possible applications for non-woven fabrics. In road and traffic route construction, they are usually laid on top of the subsoil as separating and filtering layers. Non-wovens for road construction are selected on the basis of "Geotextile Robustness Classes" according to the "Merkblatt über die Anwendung von Geokunststoffen im Erdbau des Straßenbaues" (Data sheet on the use of geosynthetics in earthworks for highway construction). In the form of separating and filtering non-wovens they are used in drainage systems and to protect sealing membranes.

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