Geotextiles are used in a variety of civil engineering applications, which include road construction, drainage systems, and erosion control among others. These fabrics are biodegradable and can perform various functions such as separation, filtration, drainage, reinforcement and protection. On account of their multiple functionality and biodegradable nature, demand for geotextiles has been growing over the past few years. Use of geotextiles helps in increasing the life span of the application in which they are used. In addition, chemical treatments on these fabrics can prolong their life span by a number of decades, thus leading to lower cost of replacement.
Road construction has been the largest application of geotextiles followed by erosion control and drainage application. Special focus on utilizing geotextile fabrics in majority of infrastructure development activities in countries such as Brazil, Russia, China and India is expected to drive the growth for this product.
Regulatory support given by national governments of developed as well as developing economies coupled with implementation of California Bearing Ratio (CBR) and Minimum Average Roll Value (MARV) is expected to further the growth of the market. In addition, numerous large-scale experiments which are being performed in countries such as the U.S. and the U.K. for protection and restoration of shorelines of rivers and other water bodies is forecasted to increase the demand of geotextiles in these regions.
Polypropylene and polyester are commonly used in the manufacture of geotextiles. However, the fluctuating cost of these polymers has impacted the costs of geotextiles fabrics. Due to the requirement of simultaneous actions of soil reinforcement and vegetation growth, there is an increased demand for geotextiles made from natural fibers. The widespread availability of natural fibers such as jute and sisal in Asia Pacific has resulted in usage of these products for geotextile production of geotextiles.
Royal TenCate, Propex, GSE Holding Inc., Officine Maccaferri, NAUE GmbH & Co. KG, Low & Bonar, and Fiberweb are some of the leading geotextile manufacturers.
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