Glossary of technical and industry terms.


The airlaying process is mostly used for hygiene applications. In airlaying, the fibers are fed into an air stream and from there to a moving belt or perforated drum, where they form a randomly oriented web.

Airlaid Nonwoven

Airlaid web bonded by one or more methods to provide fabric integrity.


Web or material that reinforces or supports the back of a product such as wallpaper or carpet.


Conversion of fiber web materials into a nonwoven sheet by chemical (adhesive or solvent) or physical (mechanical or thermal) means.

Bonding agent

Substance used to bond materials together. It can be mixed into a liquid solution or applied in dry form and melted with heat.


Machine used to make the surface of paper smooth or glossy. In the calender machine two or more heavy cylinders impart heat and pressure as sheets are drawn between them. The cylinders can have surface features required in the fabric being produced (for example, patterned or smooth surfaces, or features to increase porosity).


Finishing process that uses a calender to finish fiber web fabrics - also describes adding special features such as high luster, glazing and patterns. It is used to give a smoother, often glossier surface to improve the printability of paper or board.


Nonwoven manufacturing process using bales of fibers that are first opened and blended and then formed into a web by using a carding machine. Carded webs can be bonded using spunlace, needlepunch, thermal or chemical bonding.

Carding machine

Machine, which is a rotating drum or series of drums covered in fine wires or teeth, used in the carding process.

Chemical Bonding

Method of bonding fiber web materials using chemicals (bonding agents or solvents). The process of chemical bonding may use impregnation, spraying, printing and/or foam applications.


Coated papers are used, for example, in flexible packaging materials, poster papers and label papers. Coated papers have certain advantages in comparison to uncoated papers, including decreased ink absorption and increased surface strength. Coating usually increases the paper’s resistance to dust and enhances its gloss and brightness. In the coating process, a liquid coating is applied to either one or both sides of the paper. After application of the required amount, the coating is dried and finished. The coating can consist of several components, the most important of which usually are the pigment and the binder.


Combination of two or more specific materials that have a distinct interface between them.

Composite Nonwoven

Term used to describe a product where the essential part of a composite material can be identified as a nonwoven - such as a nonwoven fabric to which filaments or yarn have been added.


Entity that converts fabric on rolls to a finished or next-step intermediary product. Among other things, converters can process roll-good materials to prepare them for use by end-users (slit, dye or print).  


Coreboard is produced from recovered fibers, sometimes combined with a small proportion of primary wood pulp. Coreboard is used to produce papercores, for example, for the paper and textile industry.


Paper cores produced from coreboard are used by the paper and board, textile yarn and plastic-film industries.


Characteristic of a fabric given by crepping or embossing to give a crimped surface to provide stretch or increased absorbency. Crepping Process of making crepe papers, where the paper web is threaded against a blade laying on a cylinder, giving the paper a "wavy" shape and extra elasticity.


Ability of a fabric to fold in on itself and conform to the shape of the object it is covering. It is also the term for the covering over a patient used during surgical operations.


European Disposables and Nonwovens Association, an industry association that serves the nonwovens and related industries in Europe.


Process where a pattern is pressed onto a material, generally by being drawn between two cylinders, one with a raised pattern and the other heated.


 Treatment of certain filter papers, crepe papers and high end décor papers, where paper is saturated with chemicals and resins.

JEC Group

JEC Group is a company devoted to the promotion of composite materials. It supports the development of composites through the dissemination of knowledge and the promotion of exchanges between suppliers and users.


Outer covering of a product that is exposed or in contact with the body. In wallcovering products, facing is a fiber web ready for printing without any further surface treatments.


Short, basic, threadlike structure that is the basis from which papers, nonwovens, yarns and textiles are made. There are natural animal fibers such as wool and silk; vegetable fibers such as cellulosic (wood or grass), cotton and flax; and mineral fibers such as asbestos. Manmade fibers include synthesized polymers such as polyester and nylon, modified natural polymers such as rayon and mineral fibers such as glass.

Fiber web

Product of web-forming machines and processes such as wetlaid, airlaid, spunlaid and carding and others that produce nonwoven fiber webs.


European term for paper which is passed through a supercalender stack comprising between 16 and 18 rolls. The combination of heat, pressure and moisture results in a dense, smooth and transparent paper. See "Supercalendered KraftPaper-SCK".


INDA Association of Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, an industry trade association that represents the nonwoven fabrics industry in North America.

Label Papers

One-side machine-coated or cast-coated papers used for labels in the beverage and food industry as well as for industrial and office use.


Combination of different, prefabricated layers, into a permanent bond, using an adhesive to secure the bonding if required.


Light-weight, medium-weight and heavy-weight coated papers, which are produced from mechanical and chemical pulp. These papers are coated to provide a high-quality printing surface. Used for special and general interest magazines, catalogs and advertising materials.

Manmade Fibers

All chemically produced fibers that are not completely natural fibers such as wood fibers, cotton, wool, flax and silk. Manmade fibers are polymers synthesized from chemical compounds (such as nylon or polyester), transformed natural polymers (such as Rayon, acetates) or minerals (glass).

Medical Fabrics

Nonwoven, composite and crepe fabrics, which can be used in sterilization wraps, drapes, gowns, disposable devices, and accessories. Medical fabrics offer uniformity, strength, absorbency or repellency and are low-linting.

Mechanical Bonding

Process of bonding fiber web materials by entangling them using needle punching, stitching or high-pressure air or water jets (Spunlace).

Meltblown Technology

A variation of the Spunlaid process, whereby melted polymer pellets are spun into continuous fibers and laid down on a belt through a vacuum system, which scatters the melt, solidifies it and breaks it up into a fibrous web. This method can provide a small fiber diameter, which provides benefits in filtration, acoustic and absorption applications.


Medium weight coated. See "LWC".

Natural Fibers

Fibers that come directly from animals, plants or minerals including wood, silk, wool, flax, cotton, ramie, jute and chemical pulp.


Mechanically binding a web to form a fabric by penetrating the web with an array of barbed needles that carry tufts of the web’s own fibers in a vertical direction through the web.


A manufactured sheet or web of directionally or randomly oriented fibers bonded by friction and/or cohesion and/or adhesion, excluding paper and products that are woven, knitted, tufted, stitch-bonded; incorporate binding yarns or filaments; or are felted by wet-milling, whether or not additionally needled. The fibers may be of natural or man-made origin. They may also be staple or continuous filaments or be formed in situ.

Nonwovens Industry Magazine

Monthly trade magazine for the nonwovens industry.


Northern bleached softwood kraft.


Association of the European flexible packaging and labeling industry. An organization that aims to improve awareness about the advantages offered by paper as a substrate for flexible packaging of primarily food and non-food products, for wet glue bottle labels and for self-adhesive laminates and labels, to the benefit of converters, brand owners, retailers and final consumers.


Liquid or solid substance that is made by chemically linking macromolecules together in chains. Made by the process of polymerization; a "high polymer" describes a polymer produced of long polymer chains.


A product resulting from the cooking of wood chips, cotton or other sources of cellulose with water and required chemicals. Pulp forms the basic raw material for producing paper and boards.

Random Laying

 Forming a fiber web without regard to the direction in which the fibers are aligned.

Release Base Papers

 In a self-adhesive label stock, the back page of a label that is removed and discarded.

Roll Goods

Fabric or fiber web rolled on core-tubing after being produced. Roll goods are often delivered to contractors for further processing and delivery to end users.

Specialty Papers

Coated, calendered, crepped or impregnated papers including labeling, flexible packaging, greaseproof, decoration, crepe and wallpaper base papers designed and produced to meet specialized customer needs.


The device used for making Rayon, nylon, and other synthetic fibers. It consists of a plate pierced with holes through which polymer pellets are extruded in filaments.

Spin Laying

The process of extruding polymeric solution through Spinnerets to form fibers and filaments before laying them down on a moving screen to form a web.


 A fiber web produced by Spin Laying, which creates a web that is consolidated into a fabric in a single process, and which is bonded by one or more methods to provide fabric integrity.

Supercalendered Paper (SC)

The super-calendered paper is an uncoated paper produced from mechanical, chemical and deinked pulp and filler. The paper is calendered to achieve a glossy printing surface. Used for magazines, catalogs and advertising materials.

Supercalendered Kraft Paper (SCK)

North American term for the paper which is passed through a supercalender stack comprising between 7 and 10 rollers. Due to the use of fewer rollers, there is less pressure and hence SCK is less dense and less transparent than European glassine calendered grades of paper.

Synthetic Fibers

Manmade fiber which usually is created from a molten polymer or polymer in solution.

Wet Forming

 The wet forming (wetlaid) process is used in applications that include filtration materials, medical apparel, wiping products, wallcoverings and technical products used in decoration or insulation. The wetlaid process has been developed from papermaking techniques. In this process, a dilute slurry of water and fibers is deposited on a moving wire screen and drained to form a web, which can be further consolidated by pressing between rollers.


A fiber web made by Wet Forming.

Wetlaid Nonwoven

Wetlaid nonwoven web bonded to provide fabric integrity.

Wood Pulp

Used to make paper, wood pulp is formed by cooking cellulose fibers with water and chemicals. It is very absorbent and used as a raw material for forming paper and nonwoven fiber webs.


A continuous strand of fibers or filaments that are twisted together and used for woven, knitted or braided fabrics.

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