Nonwovens Innovation & Research Institute - Facilities
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Research and development at NIRI is supported by comprehensively equipped laboratories. Some of the facilities are listed below.

Pilot plant and prototyping

Fibre opening and blending

Fibre extraction and pulling plant

Carding (parallel-laid)

Carding (cross-laid)

Vertical lapping


Electrospinning (fibrous webs)

Force spinning



Hydroentanglement (7 injectors up to 180 bar)

Needlepunching (flat and structured)

Thermal bonding: calender (smooth and point bonding)

Thermal bonding: through-air

Chemical bonding (various impregnation methods including foam)

Drying and curing

Hot melt



Vacuum bagging (composites)

Nano-particle deposition

Plasma treatment


Spray application

Foulard application
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Testing and characterisation

Standard textile testing facilities for fibres, yarns and fabrics in accordance with BS, ISO, ASTM and IST


Fibre dimensions (length, diameter distribution, crimp, cross-sectional shape) and surface analysis

Contact angle, surface tension and wetting

Fabric dimensions

Frictional properties

Tensile testing

Burst testing

Tear testing

Compression testing

Delamination testing


Dimensional stability

Handle testing (Kawabata)

Crease recovery



Image analysis (pore structure, fibre orientation, structural characterisation)

Liquid transport, wicking and absorbency

Moisture vapour transmission

Air permeability


Thermal resistance and conductivity

Sweating guarded hotplate

Abrasion resistance

Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy

Thermogravimetric analysis

Differential scanning calorimetry

X-ray microtomography

Ultraviolet / visible / near infrared spectrophotometry

Spectraflash colour spectrophotometry

Scanning electron microscopy (including environmental and field emission gun)
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