Oriented Polyethylene Films

Enabling the plastics circular economy with recyclable monomaterial packaging

Brand owners and consumers are demanding easy-to-recycle packaging that ensures food safety and extends the shelf life of products. Oriented polyethylene film technologies offer new building blocks that provide the high film quality that is expected with the recyclability that is demanded.

Orientation of films allows for property improvements otherwise not attainable in blown or cast films such as stiffness, toughness, and heat resistance. These enhancements allow recyclable all-PE films to replace traditional mixed material packaging which are not recyclable. Oriented films are ideal for use in food packaging, heavy duty shipping sacks, e-commerce and other demanding applications.

Oriented films are designed for recycling and suitable for a range of formats including:

  • Stand-up pouches
  • Flow wrappers
  • Pillow packs
  • Metallized films
  • Tapes and labels

Orientation can be achieved using a variety of technologies. Machine direction orientation (MDO) stretches a cast or blown film in one direction while stretching a cast sheet in both machine and transverse directions results in a biaxially oriented (BO) film. NOVA Chemicals has developed BOPE-HD and MDO-HDPE technologies that may be used to replace biaxially oriented polypropylene (BOPP) and PET (BOPET) in multi-material laminates or metallized structures. MDO-LLDPE technology provides toughness like BOPA.

Please contact us to help you develop sustainable packaging solutions.

Photo credit Brückner Maschinenbau


NOVA Chemicals has fulfilled the promise of developing fully recyclable films with the world’s first high density polyethylene (BOPE-HD) resin designed to run in the tenter frame process. SURPASS® TX150-A allows an all-polyethylene biaxially oriented print web, which can be laminated to an all-polyethylene sealant web for complete recyclability. Several film formulations have been successfully trialed on commercial, semi-commercial and pilot scale equipment. We are working with film producers across multiple regions to establish a global supply of commercial BOPE-HD films.

Technical Features/Benefits

  • Proven processability on commercial tenter frame lines, including lines designed for BOPP
  • Clear or matte finish options available
  • Stable coefficient of friction (COF) and receptive to surface modification via corona treatment
  • Sufficient heat resistance for packaging, metallization and coating processes
  • High stiffness to maintain registration for printing and converting
  • Easy open packaging

The successful development of NOVA Chemical’s BOPE-HD films is the direct result of collaboration with a global stretching line manufacturer, Brückner Maschinenbau, and a number of biax film manufacturers.


NOVA Chemicals developed MDO films with 100% HDPE based on SURPASS® HPs153-A. The films show exceptional stability due to broad orientation windows when produced on commercial scale inline MDO blown film equipment. MDO-HDPE films can be used to replace BOPP and BOPET to produce fully recyclable all-PE laminates with high stiffness, excellent heat resistance and outstanding optical properties.

Technical Features/Benefits

  • High output rates and stable production due to ultra-clean resins designed for MDO applications
  • Eye-catching esthetics due to very low haze and very high gloss
  • Exceptional stiffness to maintain registration for printing and converting for applications like stand-up pouches and flow wraps
  • Maximum heat resistance with minimal film shrinkage, ideal for packaging conversion, metallization and coating processes


MDO-LLDPE films are designed for superior toughness and puncture resistance. Sustainable packaging goals can be attained with thinner gauge MDO-LLDPE films by replacing thicker blown films thereby using less material for equivalent performance. These films can also be used in monomaterial laminates to provide toughness for fully recyclable packaging. MDO-LLDPE films were developed using SURPASS® SPsK919-F and SCLAIR® FP026-F for packaging sharp products, pet food and frozen foods.  

Technical Features/Benefits

  • High toughness allows for downgauged recyclable packaging
  • High tear and puncture resistance
  • Films with low haze and high gloss

Media Coverage

Sustainable Plastics

A lightbulb moment led to the development of a new material – how three companies came together to make that happen

Plastics Technology

Nova’s new biaxially oriented HDPE is seen as a more easily recyclable monomaterial contender versus multilayer BOPP or BOPET films.

Plastics in Packaging

New resin technology set to transform flexibles market

Chemical Week

Nova introduces biaxially oriented PE film technology.

Canadian Plastics

Nova enters high-density biaxially oriented polyethylene market

Plastics News

Developing HD-BOPE shows working together is a success.

Packaging Digest

Nova Chemicals’ Biaxially Oriented PE Film Technology Achieves Milestone in Recyclability