24 Indu and Pack Textiles

S. Amsamani

epgp books








Every industry uses some textile material either to carry out the basic production process or to speed up the manufacturing process. The textile materials used in the industries are called Indu tech. This includes simple items like cleaning brushes to high tech circuit board made from glass fibers. Some of the common items used in the industries are conveyor belts, drive belts, bolting cloth, absorption glass mat (AGM ) glass battery separators, ropes, composites, filtration products and industrial brushes. Technical textiles consumption under Indutech in India is estimated at around Rs 2,326 crore. Printed circuit boards, battery separators and other applications of fibre glass constitute around one-third of the technical textiles usage in. Indu tech segment of technical textiles is estimated to provide employment to 1 lakh people of whom number of technical employees is estimated at 65,000 and number of non-technical employees is estimated at 35,000.




At the end of the session the learner will be able to

  •  To gain knowledge about various textile materials used in the smooth functioning of industries.
  •  Understand the importance and use of industrial textiles.



The textile materials either in the form of fiber, yarn or fabrics used in the industry during production process to improve the quality of production is called indu tech.




1.4.1    Decatising cloth


Decatising cloth, also known as Decatising wrapper is an industrial fabric used in Decatising machines. The fabric is an integral part of both Open Decatising and Kier Decatising machines that are majorly used for mechanical finishing of woven fabrics.


Decatising cloth is a polyamide/cotton or polyester/cotton blended woven fabric available in weights ranging from 400 to 600 gsm. Warp yarn of 3/48s and weft yarn of 34s is used for the same. Decatising wrapper is used for mechanical finishing of synthetic fabrics or blends. It is used as a wrapper on the beam of Decatising machine; the consumption per beam depends on the diameter of the beam and varies from 400 meters to 850 meters. All suiting fabric manufactured in India is decatised. The market for decatising wrapper is estimated at 1.2 million meters valued at Rs. 30 crore. Bombay Dyeing is the largest manufacturer of decatising wrapper with a market share of around 50%. Others are JKT Fabrics, Mumbai and Noor Textiles. Raymonds are the importers of decatising wrapper. The imports are primarily from Italy. The exports of decatising wrapper from India are negligible.


1.4.2    Bolting cloth


Bolting cloth is a mesh fabric used primarily for screen printing in Textile industry. The fabric also has applications in filtration. Bolting cloth is a woven fabric manufactured from polyester and nylon yarns and is available in a variety of mesh sizes. The advent of new printing technology in India has reduced the use of screen printing, thus, impacting the demand for this fabric negatively. The manufacturers of bolting Cloth are Bombay Bolting Centre, Mumbai ,Surat Bolting, Surat and Khanna Bolting, Surat. Majority of Bolting Cloth is imported from China and Germany. The exports of bolting cloth from India are negligible. Polyester and nylon mono-filament yarn is used as the raw material.


1.4.3     Absorbent Glass mat Battery


Battery separator is a porous sheet placed between the positive and negative electrodes in a liquid electrolyte, a gel electrolyte or a molten salt battery. Its function is to prevent physical contact of the positive and negative electrodes while serving as an electrolyte reservoir to enable free ionic transport. According to the structure, the separator can be divided as micro porous and non-woven. An ideal battery separator should have the properties of high porosity, small mean pore diameter, oxidation resistance, puncture resistance, thermal dimensional stability and freedom from harmful chemical contaminants and favorable voltage characteristics. The battery separators are made of PVC, PE and non-woven glass mats. (The glass mats are known as AGM (Absorbable Glass Mat).In India, the storage battery industry is slowly shifting from PVC separators to  Polyethylene separators. The absorbent glass mats (AGM) are manufactured by dry-laid process, wet-laid process, spun-bond process or melt-blown process using glass fibre / glass wool.The storage batteries industry can be classified as Industrial batteries and automotive batteries.


1.4.4    Cigarette Filter


Cigarette filter reduces harshness of tobacco smoke by reducing the amount tar, smoke and other fine particles during combustion of the tobacco portion. The filter is primarily made-up Cigarette filter reduces harshness of tobacco smoke by reducing the amount tar, smoke and other fine particles during combustion of the tobacco portion. The filter is primarily made-up of cellulose acetate fibres known as tow. The fibres are bonded together with a hardening agent, tri-acetic plastic, which helps the filter to keep its shape. The filter is wrapped in paper and sealed with a line of adhesive. The total size of the filter cigarette industry in India is around 120 billion cigarettes. The major manufacturers of cigarette filters in India are Hind Filters and Hitkari Multi fibers apart from smaller manufacturers like Nirmesh Enterprises. The cigarette filters are imported in India from Korea, Pakistan and Indonesia. Cambodia and Iran account for two-third of exports of cigarette filters from India followed by UAE and Taiwan. Nirmesh Enterprises. The cigarette filters are imported in India from Korea, Pakistan and Indonesia. Cambodia and Iran account for two-third of exports of cigarette filters from India followed by UAE and Taiwan.


1.4.5     Coated abrasives (TT component)


An abrasive material is used to finish a work piece through rubbing the surface of the work piece. Abrasives are primarily used in industrial applications like grinding, polishing, buffing, honing, cutting and smoothening. The coated abrasives are classified into two broad categories: Woven coated abrasives and Non-woven coated abrasives. The cloths used are cotton, polyester and polyester blends, processed to obtain a suitable coated abrasives backing. These backings have special characteristics as weight, tensile strength and flexibility. The type of backing cloth used is Jeans cloth called “J” weight cloth, Drills cloth called “X” weight cloth and Sateen called “S” weight cloth.”J” weight cloth typically has a weight of about 130-195 GSM.”X” weight cloth typically has a weight of about 200-245 GSM and “Y” weight cloth typically has a weight of about 270-330 GSM. The non-woven coated abrasives are made from abrasive grade fibres and made available for usage in various sizes and forms.


The market of coated abrasives is primarily driven by growth in automobiles, auto-ancillaries, auto after markets, castings and forging, consumer goods, tanneries, hand tool, power tools, furniture, sanitary-ware and construction. The backing cloth is made from polyester, rayon and cotton fibres. The fabrics are generally woven at 90 degrees to each other or stitching together an overlay of fibre placed at 90 degrees to each other. The key machinery used for manufacture of backing cloth is rapier looms. The non-woven abrasives are manufactured using the needle punching process on needle looms.


1.4.6     Conveyor belts


Belt Conveyor system is a fastest, environment friendly & economical mode of bulk transportation. The conveyor belt is used to move unit loads individually and bulk loads continuously. A Conveyor belt consists of three components: Cover, Carcass and Insulation – the bonding medium for the carcass. Belting fabrics are used for reinforcing these conveyor belts. The carcass provides the strength for transmitting the power to drive the conveyor and to support the load carried on the belt. Conveyor belts can be classified as rubber conveyor belts and PVC conveyor belts. Rubber based belting can be textile reinforced or steel reinforced. Textile reinforced belts are primarily of nylon, polyester. Most of the steel cord belts are used in the mining sector. The belts can be classified based on their application as General Purpose, Heat-resistant, Fire resistant, Oil-Resistance and Food Grade. Conveyor belts find major application in cement, mining, thermal power plants, paper, glass, fertilizer and other process industries where there is a requirement for continuous transfer of load.


1.4.7     Drive belt


A belt drive is a method of transferring rotary motion between two shafts. A belt drive includes one pulley on each shaft and one or more continuous belts over the two pulleys. The motion of the driving pulley is, generally, transferred to the driven pulley via the friction between the belt and the pulley. The transmission belts can be classified as Flat, Vee, Poly-Vee and Timing belts. Flat belts are found in industries, V belts are used in alternators, air conditioning compressors, power steering pumps and water pumps, apart from fans in automobiles. Poly-Vee is combination of flat and V. Timing belts move one after the other based upon the industrial functions. These belts are generally manufactured from a

core of high tensile with synthetic rubber matrix enclosed in a fabric reinforce rubber lining. Woven fabric or cord that is reinforced as ply in the drive belt is made of polyester, Nylon and cotton.


 1.4.8  Ropes & cordages

    Synthetic ropes and cordages are substitutes to traditional ropes and cordages made from jute and cotton. The synthetic ropes and cordages are made from polypropylene and polyethylene of 110, 220, 330 and 440 metres and diameter of the ropes varies from ½ to 7 inches. The 3-Strand and 4-Strand ropes are required for fisheries, electricity boards, defense, ports and ship building yards, steel pipe industries, sugar factories, engineering and oil exploration. The company also makes 8-Strand ropes that are ideal for marine applications. These products are manufactured to desired specifications.
The functional specifications of ropes are 

    •          Excellent strength

•          Controlled elongation

•          Abrasion resistance

•          Heat resistance

•          Non-corrosive

•          Light weight

•          High flexibility


1.4.9     Composites


Production of composites involves combining polymer and glass fibre or carbon fibre in order to produce a material that is lighter yet stronger than steel. The technical textile material in the composites is the fibre glass. Fibre glass dominates the composites industry as a preferred reinforcement fibre, with a share of around 85%-90%. Other reinforcement fibre like carbon fibre is sparingly used in India owing to its patented technology and high costs.


Fibre glass is made of fine solid rods of glass each with thickness less than one twentieth the width of human hair. Glass fibres are loosely packed together into a mass which can serve as heat insulators. They are also used like wool or cotton fibres to make glass yarn, tape, cloth and mats. Fibre glass also has applications in electrical insulation, chemical filtration and fire fighters’ suits. Combined with plastics, fibre glass is used for airplane wings and bodies, automobile bodies, wind mill blades and boat hulls. The glass fibre is used primarily in the Wind energy, Wind Mill blades, Chemicals industry, Piping, Cooling towers, Automobiles, Oil and Gas, Marine, Building and Construction industries.


1.4.10 Printed circuit boards (TT component)


The Printed Circuit Board (PCB) is a mechanical device used to electrically connect and hold electronic components. The technical textile used in the manufacture of printed circuit board is the woven glass fibre fabric which is used as reinforcement along with the epoxy resin. It is used to bind the copper foils to give copper laminated boards, called laminates. These laminates are further cut into various sizes based on the requirement. The raw material used for glass fibre fabric is monofilament glass fibres.


The desired properties of the glass fabric required for PCB applications are dimensional stability, surface smoothness, ability to withstand laser and mechanical drilling, superior conductive anodic filament (CAF) resistance, uniform dielectric constant (generally in range of 6.6-6.9), Lower dissipation factor (0.006), reduced signal skew and improved signal integrity. The glass fibre fabric used for reinforcements is E-glass fibre which would be a 100-200 GSM fabric.


1.4.11 Computer printer ribbon


The computer printer cartridge of a Dot matrix printer (DMP) consists of a cassette and inked fabric called the printer ribbon. The cartridge is replaced when no further prints can be availed, however in order to save on costs only the ribbon portion is changed which is called the refill. The yarn is woven into a fabric which is cut to required size for making computer printer ribbons. The fabric is prepared from nylon yarn. It is then cut into required dimensions, soaked in ink which is of the consistency of wax or crayon, and packed in rolls.


The properties essential for this fabric is high tensile strength, good absorption capacity and capillary action, smudge resistance, scratch resistance, good heat resistance, These properties enable the ribbon to carry the ink and undergo stress during printing.

1.4.12 Paper making fabrics


Paper machine clothing consists of large continuous belts of custom designed and custom manufactured, engineered fabrics that are installed on paper machines and carry the paper stock through each stage of the paper production process. The types of fabrics are as follows:

  • Forming fabric – single-layer and double layer fabrics, two-and-half layer designs.
  • Press fabrics – comprising single-base and multi base fabrics.
  • Dryer fabrics – which consist of woven mesh dryers fabrics, needled woven mesh dryers,
  • Spiral link dryer fabrics, and needled spiral link dryer fabrics.

The paper making fabrics are made from polyester and polyamide wires which are woven to produce the fabric. Polyester or polyamide wires are used for making the fabrics. The major properties of these fabrics are good drain ability, transferability of wet paper web, run-ability, wear resistance, compaction resistance, resistance to hair shedding and above all maintain uniformity.


1.4.13 Filteration Products


The separation of solids from liquids or gases by textile filter media is an essential part of countless industrial processes, contributing to purity of product, savings energy, and improvements in process efficiency, recovery of precious materials and general improvements in pollution control.


Key application areas of filtration products are classification based on applications are Industrial filters and Automotive filters


Industrial filters include vacuum filters, pressure filters, and dust collection equipment like bag filters used in industries like Cement, Pharma, Fertilizer, Food Processing and other process industries


Automotive filters are primarily of three types namely Oil filter, Air filter and Fuel filter. The filters clean the oil, air and fuel by blocking dirt and other unwanted particles from entering the vehicle system. The fabric used in the filters is cellulose and polyester non-  woven filter paper. The characteristics of filtration products are permeability, bursting strength, pore size, volatile content, resin content, width and height. They are manufactured from polyester and cellulose non-woven fabric of around 120-150 GSM. Spun, MultiFilament, Monofilament from Polypropylene, Polyester, Nylon, Cotton, Poly/Cotton, Stainless steel and Carbon with manufacturing widths up to 3.6 mts wide and joint less rolls upto 2000 mtrs.


The filtration products can be classified into two major categories.

  • Liquid solid separation (involves woven filter media).
  • Air-solid separation (non woven fabric)

The filtration media manufactured in India is predominantly manufactured in the woven form. The nonwoven filtration media is manufactured by needle punching process.




Pack tech includes several flexible packing material made of textile used for packing various goods for industrial, agricultural, consumer and other goods. It ranges from polymer based bags used for industrial packing to jute based sacks used for packaging food grains and packaging used for tea. This packaging (excluding jute) is also referred to as flexible packaging materials. Most of the demand for these products is satisfied by domestic production with imports of only around Rs 86 crore. The Indian pack tech segment is expected to grow at a rate of 22% to US$ 11,782 million by 2016-17 as per estimates of the Working Group on Textiles and Jute Industry, Ministry of Textiles, Government of India.


Woven sacks (excluding FIBC) account for around 50% of the technical textiles consumption under Packtech followed by Jute hessian and sacks (including Food grade jute bags) with around 30% share. FIBC and wrapping fabrics account for around 20% of the total usage. Usage of technical textiles in soft luggage products, leno bags and tea-bags is less than 5% of the total usage in Packtech.




At the end of the session the learner will be able to

  •   To gain knowledge about various textile materials used in packing any product
  •    Understand the types and the role of fabrics in safe handling.



The textile materials used for holding any product to enable it to be shifted to the site of next production process of end used is described as packtech or pack textiles. It is designed in such a way that it protects the products and sometimes increases it life also. Traditionally course jute fabrics were used now it has been changed with smooth jute.




2.4.1    Raffia Bags


The Raffia bag Industry can be categorized into six main categories depending upon the type of woven bag made. They are namely:


•         Polyolefin Woven Sacks (excluding FIBC)

•         Flexible Intermediate Bulk Containers (FIBC)

•         Tarpaulins

•         Leno bags

•         Lamination

•         Wrapping fabric


2.4.2    Polyolefin Woven Bags / Sacks (excluding FIBC)


Polyolefin Woven Bags or Sacks are generally made out of woven with PP / HDPE yarns. The interlacing of the yarns varies from 5×5 to 14×14 or 20×20 to 56×56 per sq.cm. The variations range depends on the product to pack in. Some of the bags have their edges sealed with material fabric tapes, which has a standard 2.5 mm. widths and denier 500 D to 2000 D. The colours of these bags range from fabric natural colour, milky or coloured additives of Ultraviolet. These bags are coated with or lamination to pack fine powered products like flour of cement. In order to pack food items printed sandwich PP/HDPE bags are used. These bags reduce the contamination caused by water spills, miss handing and insects. These bags are  used for Fertilizers, Cement, Sugar, and Food grains, Salt, Flour, Cattle Feed, Seeds, Sand and Chemicals. In some cases these bags are made in smaller dimensions to pack one kg products, which are later packed in bulk containers for shipping. Cement bags on an average weigh 70g and fertilizer bags 130g. About 50% of these bags are used for transportation of cement. The various advantages that HDPE/PP bags can be listed as


•         Higher Strength

•         Light Weight

•         Minimal Seepage

•         Moisture Proof

•         Long Lasting (Durable)

•         Cheaper (as it can be reused)


Apart from the demand for these bags in the local market they are even exported to Europe and US. Reliance Industries Ltd is the main manufactures of the raw materials needed and bags.


2.4.3     Flexible Intermediate Bulk Container (FIBC)


Bulk bag, big bag or super sack, used for carrying any product from one point to another is called flexible intermediate bulk container (FIBC). They are also named as Jumbo Bags. These bags are made of flexible fabric that is designed for storing and transporting dry, flow products, such as sand, fertilizer, and granules. These are very huge and even called as industrial containers. There physical properties are similar to polyolefin woven bags expect for the size. These bags are best for shipping and can be designed as tubular or flat polypropylene (PP) woven fabrics, with or with coating depending upon the fabric to be packed. UV finish is given if the items are stored in sunlight. Panel Type, Circular woven and Baffle type (Square bags) are the three types of FIBC bags. The capacity ranges from500-4000 kgs. The weight of fabric varies from 180-275 GSM. This weight of the bags varies based on the product and requirements of the Safe Working Load (SWL), or Safety Factor (SF). Reliance Industries Ltd is the main manufacture of these bags.


2.4.4     Leno bags


Leno is a form of weave in which adjacent warp tapes are twisted around consecutive weft tapes to form a spiral pair effectively locking each weft in place. The paired warp tapes look like figure ‘8’s down the length of the fabric. A bag made from such fabric is called a Leno Bag whose prime characteristics are good aeration and strength. Theses bags are made of virgin Polypropylene (PP) with different colours like yellow, red, pink and white. These fabrics are light weight with good strength. Conventional packing materials, namely jute sacks or plastic bags can be successfully replaces by leno bags which in turn will overcome the poor handling and packing processes. The main advantage of leno bags is the outstanding air permeability. These bags are very good to look, with excellent mechanical properties. Above all they are cost effective, reuse & recyclable. Mostly vegetables fruits and grains are packed and transported in leno bags. It is also estimated to increase the life of vegetables especially onions and potatoes.


2.4.5    Jute Hessian and Sacks


Hessian, a backing material is a coarse dense plain or twill woven fabric made out of jute. This has been replaced with light weight smooth jute fabrics. Even value addition by means of dyeing and printing is done on these bags. Sometimes they ate also laminated to enable packing small partial items or powered items. Jute sacks are coarser and heavier cloth used for materials products which need no special care. Sacking bags treated with vegetable oils to destroy harmful effect of hydrocarbons are used for storing agro-based products.


2.4.6     Soft luggage products (TT component)


Luggage is described as a box like rectangular container in which ones personal belongs are stored and carried when one person travels from one place another. Luggage can be grouped as hard and soft luggage. Hard luggage is mainly made from hard molded plastic. Luggage made out of fabrics is termed as soft luggage. If is made out of woven nylon, polyester of blends. The main property of soft luggage is softness, light weight, flexibility materials, durability, elasticity and tear proof. They can be made with metal of braided fabric handles. Some high end soft luggage bags are made with metallic wheels. The most common types of soft luggage are handbags, wallets, military and athletic backpacks. The sizes vary depending upon the end user. They are even specially designed to hold items like cell phones, water bottles and documents. These bags are marketed in huge range of colours and special prints for children.


2.4.7    Tea-bags


Tea bags are common during travel and high end consumers. It is a pouch with the tea leaves or coffee power filled in to be dipped in hot water or milk to get the respectable beverage ready. Woven mesh filters to nonwoven PVC or polypropylene filter fabrics are used as tea of coffee bags. Tea bag filter paper is made with a blend of wood and vegetable fibers and heat-sealable thermoplastic is used for high temperature resistance finish. The GSM of these fabrics vary from 12-17denier. Their sizes are 120mm×51mm , 140mm×58mm ,160mm×65mm with ply cotton yarns as strings with a length of 120 -170mm. The other end of the stings is fixed with tags printed with company names, logos and some time with instructions as to how to use the product. Tetrahedral bag are also tea bags with triangular shape. They help in the free movement of the tea leaves within the bags ensuring tea flavor to its fullest.


2.4.8 Wrapping Fabrics


Wrapping fabric is made out of HDPE/PP, cotton canvas to roll over paper rolls, steel coils, yarn cones and tiers. Their weighs varies from 50 to 200 gsm and its size varies from 20 to 210 cms. They are known for their strength by at the same time there are smooth and soft. Wrapping fabrics are made by Reliance Pvt. Limited.


2.4.9 Summary


Pack tech is a fast growing sector which has seen the maximum change from course jute rugs to fine polyester and nylon fibers. This industry will able to capture the highest production and sales market since every day new products with specific requirements are moving into the local and international market. In India this industry is in the expanding mode giving space for researches and economical growth.


This unit has also given you an idea as to how fiber, yarns and fabrics can be used for storing, handing and transporting of items right from the ones we use from morning to night.

you can view video on Indu and Pack Textiles

Web links


  • www.textileglossary.com/terms/industrial-textiles.html
  • https://study.com/academy/lesson/industrial-textile-products.html