The concept of artificial grass first came about in the early 1950s, but it wasn’t until the early 1960s that it began to be manufactured.
How is artificial grass manufactured?
Artificial grass is tufted with the same methods used in making carpets. The difference in raw materials used for artificial grass means that they can be manufactured in different ways. For instance, nylon grass blades can be made in narrow sheets or thrust through moulds to make rounded or oval fibres. But for the most part, artificial grass manufacturing is the following:
- Firstly, the artificial turf “ingredients” are mixed together in a hopper, before colours and chemicals are combined so that the grass has its signature green shade and is immune to UV damage.
- Next, the mixture is poured into a big steel mixer that stirs the mixture until it has thickened.
- The liquid is then placed into an extruder and come out as an elongated, slender strands to emulate real blades of grass.
- After this, the strands are put on a carding machine and rotated into a loose rope. The lax rope is tightened and woven into a nylon yarn.
- Next, the woven shape is set through it being heated.
- The yarn is then placed in a tufting machine where a needles pierces the underside layer of the turf and feeds the yarn into the loop. Hundreds of needles and hundreds of rows of stitches are made.
- The artificial grass is then rolled out and coated with latex on its underside. Next it is sandwiched and sealed together.
- Later, the turf is left under heat lamps for the latex to set.
- It is then placed through a machine which trims any tufts.
- Finally, the artificial turf is rolled and packaged.
What is artificial grass made from?
Artificial grass is made from the synthetic materials. The three main materials are:
- Polyethylene – which is long-lasting and gentle on the skin.
- Polypropylene – which is also long-last but more hard.
- Nylon – which is very robust and more stiff.
After 50 years of development, artificial grass is now in its third generation. The third generation of artificial grass is now a lot similar to real grass and is UV ray resistant and tolerant to wear, tear and abrasion. It also has longer fibres and contains a thatch.
Polyethylene is used to make the blades of artificial grass, and is a popular form of plastic that is used to make things such as plastic carrier bags and bottles. Polyethylene originally comes in a solid shape, and has to be melted down and mixed with colours and other special agents (such as UV resistant supplements).
Polypropylene is made for the thatch layer. The thatch layer cushions the turf and gives an additional supportive layer. The grass blades are added into the turf backing via a tufting machine, which makes the blades and thatch have a secure fit.
Artificial grass installation
If you’d like more information on how artificial grass is installed, view our installation guide.