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July 22nd, 2007
Imagine a window screen with so many microscopic holes that the breeze blows in, but the rain is filtered out. You can smell the flowers outside, but the pollen can't squeeze through the mesh.
That's the concept behind a proposal for a high-tech manufacturing venture called AMW NF Nonwovens. It would apply a new process to make ultra-skinny strands of plastic fibers to be used in fabric that could revolutionize the effectiveness of surgical masks, building material and biological warfare gear.
The "nano" fibers - about 10,000 times thinner than conventional material - would fit into the nonwovens industry, a thriving spinoff from the papermaking business, which has been centered in Wisconsin's Fox Valley for generations.
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