Freudenberg filter business celebrates 60 years

Comparing past and present: Freudenberg exhibition stand, filter mats production and Freudenberg location in Weinheim

This year, Freudenberg’s filter business will be celebrating an anniversary. Sixty years ago, the pioneer in nonwovens wrote the first chapter of a new success story with the introduction of nonwoven filter mats. From these beginnings, a flourishing business developed, which has been operated since 2009 by an independent company: Freudenberg Filtration Technologies. With around 2,300 employees at more than 30 locations, the company is today one of the world’s technology leaders in filtration technology.

Setting trends with innovations

The history of the filter business at Freudenberg has been characterized by technical innovations and market trends since 1957, which the company itself has set. Examples include the development of the synthetic Viledon® compact pocket filters in the 1970s as well as a good decade later the launch of micronAir® automotive cabin air filters. Freudenberg was the first ever supplier to ensure that no dust, soot, pollen, noxious gases and unpleasant odors could enter the interior of vehicles. To this day, micronAir® is the world market leader in the automotive business.

Holistic system provider

What started life as a pure supplier of filter materials has steadily evolved over the decades. Complete cassette, pocket and HEPA filters, filter bags and cartridges have gradually been added to the range. Today, Freudenberg Filtration Technologies specializes in holistic system solutions, which comprises of the engineering, construction and operation of complete filtration plants, including a comprehensive package of services with online monitoring and on-site service technicians.

Technical diversity

The nonwoven medium still plays a significant role in air filtration and is being continuously developed. For example, for several years, Viledon® NEXX filter bags have been fulfilling demanding dust removal tasks in steel works or foundries in a particularly resource-conserving and energy-efficient manner. The basis for this is the filter medium itself: a form of Evolon® optimized for this application. Evolon is a nonwoven made from microfilaments and was developed and patented by Freudenberg.

Complete service portfolio

In the area of gas-phase filtration for protecting sensitive electronics against corrosion or the treatment of effluents in dairies or whisky distilleries, completely different technologies now supplement the original nonwoven filter medium: for example, ChemControl pellets, Honeycomb modules or Aquabio membrane bioreactors. Freudenberg Filtration Technologies has successfully extended its service portfolio in recent years from its original concentration on the filtration of air particles to completely new applications of this kind. This development into a comprehensive range of products and services from a single source is unique on the market and is a key success factor for the current filter business at Freudenberg.

Global set-up

A further area of focus was and remains early-stage globalization. In the Japan Vilene Company, Freudenberg found a reliable partner in the nonwoven and filter business as far back as the 1960s. Among other regions, the fruits of this strategic partnership are currently visible in China, where Freudenberg and the Japan Vilene Company have been present for 20 years and are producing filters for customers in the Far East at three locations – three of more than 30 sites around the world, through which Freudenberg Filtration Technologies is represented in all relevant markets.

Sustainable solutions for many industries

Filtration technologies from Freudenberg currently ensure clean air, pure gases and liquids in many industrial sectors: in vehicles, gas turbines and compressors, surface treatment, the food and beverage industry, healthcare, petrochemicals and mining. Innovative filtration technologies make processes cleaner, safer and more energy-efficient everywhere. Freudenberg’s aspiration is to use its knowledge to support the long-term business of its customers as comprehensively as possible, thereby ensuring greater quality of life. In this way, filtration solutions from Freudenberg have been helping to protect people and the environment against pollution and conserving natural resources for 60 years.

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