Skip to Main Content
U.S. Forest Service
Caring for the land and serving people

United States Department of Agriculture

Home > Search > Publication Information

  1. Share via EmailShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Twitter
    Dislike this pubLike this pub
    Author(s): Roger M. Rowell; James S. Han; Von L. Byrd
    Date: 2005
    Source: Handbook of wood chemistry and wood composites. Boca Raton, Fla. : CRC Press, 2005: pages 349-363.
    Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
    PDF: Download Publication  (354 KB)


    Wood fibers can be used to produce a wide variety of low-density three-dimensional webs, mats, and fiber-molded products. Short wood fibers blended with long fibers can be formed into flexible fiber mats, which can be made by physical entanglement, nonwoven needling, or thermoplastic fiber melt matrix technologies. The most common types of flexible mats are carded, air-laid, needlepunched, and thermobonded mats. In carding, the fibers are combed, mixed, and physically entangled into a felted mat. These are usually of high density but can be made at almost any density. Air-laid webs are made by laying down layers of wood fibers combined with a low-melting thermoplastic fiber, then passing the webs through a heated chamber that melts the thermoplastic. The heated web is then passed through calender rolls that press the melted fibers together with the wood fibers, holding the web together. A needle-punched mat is produced in a machine that passes a randomly formed machine-made web through a needle board that produces a mat in which the fibers are mechanically entangled. The density of air-laid webs and needled mats can be controlled by the amount of fiber going through the processes or by overlapping webs or mats to give the desired density. A thermobonded mat is made by combining natural fibers with a thermoplastic fiber in the needled mat technology that is then melted in a heated press holding the mat together. The webs and mats can be used as filters, geotextiles, sorbents, and mulch mats. Wood fibers can also be formed into fiber-based products using air or water as a carrier. Fibers can be sprayed in an air stream and used as insulation or ground cover. Fibers can be slurried in water, molded into wide variety of shapes (pulp molding), and dewatered to form the final dry product.

    Publication Notes

    • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.


    Rowell, Roger M.; Han, James S.; Byrd, Von L. 2005. Fiber webs. Handbook of wood chemistry and wood composites. Boca Raton, Fla. : CRC Press, 2005: pages 349-363.


    Wood-pulp products, nonwoven fabrics, fibers, geotextiles, sorbents, filters, filtration, pulping, needlepunch (nonwoven fabric), pulp products, wood fibers, mats, webs, mulch mats, molded products

    Related Search

    XML: View XML
Show More
Show Fewer
Jump to Top of Page