Acrylic is a synthetic fibre made from the polymer, polyacrylonitrile. It was first manufactured by DuPont in the mid-1940s under the trademark Orlon. For the next decade, it was not manufactured in huge quantities. It is first manufactured as a filament, after which it is cut into short, staple lengths and spun into yarn.
Uses and Application Areas:
As acrylic is a strong fibre and has a warm property of natural fibres like wool, it is substituting wool in many applications. It has many uses in garments, home textiles, the industrial sector and other fields.
Garments: sweaters, gloves, socks, hats, knitted underwear, sportswear, tracksuits, pajamas, womenswear,childrenswear, hand knitted yarn etc.
Home textiles: rugs, carpets, upholstery, blankets, cushions etc.
Industrial: filter fabric, tents, sheets, awnings, alternative asbestos, boat covers, paper making.
Other uses: toys, auxiliary tapes, wigs, braids, bag fabric etc.
Acrylic staple fibre (ASF) is mainly produced in China, north East Asia, south Asia, and south East Asia, the Middle East, Africa, east and west Europe and in a few parts of the Americas. The world's largest manufacturer and consumer of ASF is China.
Source: Office of the Textile Commissioner, P: Provisional
In India, overall annual production capacity of ASF is 147.40 MT. There are six major manufacturers. As the graph shows, ASF production is expected to decline in 2016-17 by almost 17.65 metric tons compared to 2015-16, which is a sharp shrinkage of around 17 per cent. Indian ASF production grew at a CAGR of 2.79 per cent for the period 2011-2016, and is expected to continue growing parallel to its demand.