Spandex, elastane or lycra is an elastic synthetic fiber. It contains a combination of long chain polglycol, short chain diisocynate, and minimum 85% of polyurethane. Stabilizers and colorants are added to improve quality and enhance appearance of spandex. Spandex offers superior strength, weight, and versatility as compared to rubber. They have high elasticity and can be stretched 500% of their length.
It is mainly used in fabrics due to its properties such as ability to be stretched, softness, smoothness, lightweight, easy dyeing, abrasion resistant, resistant to detergent, resistant to body oils and perspiration, and compatible with other materials and fibers. It is commonly used in textile and clothing industry and healthcare industry. Spandex is used in sportswear, active wear, casual clothing, under garments, home furnishings, diapers, bandages, and compression stocking and hoses.
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Dry spinning is commonly used for synthesis of spandex as it is a cost effective method. However, the use of wet spinning method is increasing due to its application in manufacturing spandex for medical use. Textile is the largest application segment of spandex market, owing to increasing awareness about its stretching ability and increasing demand for sportswear.
The key market players in spandex market are adopting inorganic and organic strategies such as merger and acquisition, capacity expansion, and new product launch to sustain their position. Some companies operating in the spandex market include Asahi Kasei Corporation, DuPont, Hyosung Corporation, Indorama Industries Limited, INVISTA, Jiangsu Shaungliang Spandex Co., Ltd, TK Chemical Corp., Xiamen Lilong Spandex Co., Ltd, Yantai, Taekwang Industrial Co. Ltd., Tayho Advanced Materials Co., Ltd, and Zhejiang Huafon Spandex Co. Ltd.
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