Feature Story: Focus on R&D

Featuring R&D Scientist Mark Lawrence

“The customer has a team able to diagnose and eliminate problems at any stage of the product development cycle.”

Mark Lawrence

Formula for Success: Lab Renovations + Passion for Solving Problems

Mark Lawrence is no rookie to R&D. Spending 17 of his 22 years working at National Nonwovens as a Research and Development Scientist has given him a unique perspective.

“I have been a part of our company’s transformation from a commodity manufacturer to a specialty producer of highly technical products,” says Mark. “This evolution has included changes in all facets of the company, from our equipment capabilities to our marketing strategies. Today, my favorite part of the job is solving a particularly difficult or complex problem with an elegant solution."

Solving these challenges is even more fun for Mark these days. Recent and ongoing laboratory renovations have increased capacity to evaluate thermal, flammability, acoustical, and chemical properties, allowing the R&D Team to tailor product designs to better fit customers’ requirements. Some of the renovations and enhanced features include:

Advanced Flammability Testing

  • Radiant Panel Flammability Apparatus – Testing per FAR 25-856(a) on thermal acoustic insulation materials for aerospace applications and variations of other types of materials.
  • High Temperature Inert Gas Oven - Allows materials to be heated in different atmospheres.
  • Drop Tower for Impact Testing – Gravity accelerates projectiles as it drops onto a target material
  • Copper Corrosion Testing – Unique testing series developed by National Nonwovens

Customers can receive assistance in matching the best nonwoven product to a specific need, and receive assistance to determine those additional properties that will enhance the performance, ease of manufacture, and value of their end product.

“We supply performance information based on hard data from well-defined tests, proving ideas with small scale prototypes prior to moving to full scale production,” says Mark. “The customer has a team able to diagnose and eliminate problems at any stage of the product development cycle.”

View and print Capabilities Overview.

What is Mark’s favorite equipment? “My favorite ‘equipment’ is our R&D team,” says Mark. “We work extremely well together and have been able to create solutions for every challenge we have tackled.”