Frankfurt: The Hotspot For High-Tech Textiles

Technical textiles for all applications and a wide range of textile technologies: from 14 to 17 May 2019, Techtextil will bring together more exhibitors from even more countries than before.

Around four months before it opens its doors, Techtextil is almost fully booked, exceeding once again booking levels for the previous event at the same time of year. With its trend theme, ‘Urban Living – City of the Future’, the leading international trade fair also takes a look ahead to see how technical textiles will shape urban life in the future. The suppliers at Techtextil represent the complete spectrum of technical textiles and nonwovens. There is a significant increase in the number of suppliers in the fields of technology, as well as fibres and yarns. Suppliers of woven fabrics, coated textiles and functional apparel textiles are also strongly represented. All areas of application for textile materials are covered. In particular, representatives from industry, architecture and construction, the fashion and clothing industry, the automotive sector, aerospace, medicine, sport, and hazard protection will find a more comprehensive range of products than before.

The Techtextil and Texprocess exhibition area will be presenting examples of textile applications

New: Techtextil Forum provides an open platform for exchange

On all four days, the trade fair will offer a new format of lectures, discussions and interactive sessions with the Techtextil Forum. The forum, which replaces the Techtextil Symposium, will take place directly in exhibition Hall 4.1 and all Techtextil participants will be able to Access it free of charge. Trade visitors can look forward to contributions in the following thematic areas: sustainability, digital transformation, smart textiles, urban textiles, composites, and technical textiles in medical technology.

Awards for innovative ideas

For the 15th time now, Techtextil will be giving the Techtextil Innovation Award for outstanding new and further developments in the field of technical textiles, nonwovens and functional apparel fabrics. Both exhibitors and non-exhibitors at Techtextil can take part in the competition. Also for the 15th time, Techtextil will be giving awards to students and young professionals for their work, as part of the ‘Textile Structures for New Building’ competition.

Focus on sustainability

Sustainability is one of the central themes of the upcoming Techtextil and Texprocess. For the first time, the two fairs will be showcasing their exhibitors’ efforts towards sustainability. The Techtextil and Texprocess Innovation Awards give prizes for sustainable textile innovations and processing approaches.

Techtextil and Texprocess are sharing an exhibition hall for the first time

In May 2019, Techtextil and the parallel Texprocess will be sharing an exhibition hall for the first time. In Hall 4.1, Techtextil will be showcasing some of the suppliers of woven, laid web, braided and knitted fabrics, coated textiles, and nonwovens, as well as selected suppliers of textile machines. Suppliers of functional apparel textiles and the ‘Digital Textile Micro Factory’ mark the transition to Texprocess, which will be showcasing different production lines for clothing, shoes, and the processing of technical textiles. In addition to these, exhibitors for product preparation, finishing, textile logistics, internal material flow and textile refinement, as well as providers of sewing solutions, will be there.


Perlon® will Present PearlTech® a Monofilament with a Special Surface

Perlon® will showcase PearlTech®, its latest product brand at Techtextil in Frankfurt from 14th – 17th May.

PearlTech® is a monofilament which has special particles incorporated into it. The size and shape of the particles is irregular and the material is unrelated to the base polymer. The particles are added into the polymer melt and evenly distributed over the whole cross-section. These newly acquired properties remain in- tact throughout the lifetime of the monofilament. The particles incorporated into the polymer matrix protrude slightly from the monofilament surface, giving PearlTech® an interesting optical appearance and a structured surface finish.

PearlTech® provides improved stability against wear, reduces machine power consumption (along the lines of Per- lon® Enersave®) whilst reducing the build-up of dirt on  the  end  product. The particles have no negative effect on hydrolysis resistance and furthermore offer the possibility to avoid the use of fluoropolymers. For this reason, PearlTech® provides a viable alternative to Perlon® EasyKleen® monofilament. PearlTech® monofilaments are notably used in sieves for the paper industry. They can also be used in the field of Advanced Technical Textiles for example in filtration (in particular solid-liquid separation) and in conveyor belt fabric. Through its ability to be customized, PearlTech® opens up the market for a host of new possibilities.

Perlon® QualiFil® range includes monofilaments with special properties such as flame retardancy (FireRetard®), elasticity (ElasTer®), abrasion resistancy (DuraFil®), stain resistancy (EasyKleen®), energy efficiency (EnerSave®) and UV stability. To avoid the need for a separate coating process, Perlon® has developed HighGrip monofilaments with tribological properties. These PET based BiCo monofilaments have a specific surface with special adhesive properties and different softening points. Bayco® (monofilaments for agriculture), Atlas® (Monofilaments for nautical rope) and PerlonXline (monofilaments for angling) round off the QualiFil® brands.

Perlon Group understands the need for sustainability in the future. The company is currently developing and carrying out research in the bio-monofilament field.

New Composite Advances Lignin As A Renewable 3D Printing Material

Scientists at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have created a recipe for a renewable 3D printing feedstock that could spur a profitable new use for an intractable biorefinery byproduct: lignin.

The discovery, detailed in Science Advances, expands ORNL’s achievements in lowering the cost of bioproducts by creating novel uses for lignin—the material left over from the processing of biomass. Lignin gives plants rigidity and also makes biomass resistant to being broken down into useful products.“Finding new uses for lignin can improve the economics of the entire biorefining process,” said ORNL project lead Amit Naskar. Researchers combined a melt-stable hardwood lignin with conventional plastic, a low-melting nylon, and carbon fiber to create a composite with just the right characteristics for extrusion and weld strength between layers during the printing process, as well as excellent mechanical properties.

Lignin chars easily; unlike workhorse composites like acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) that are made of petroleum-based thermoplastics, lignin can only be heated to a certain temperature for softening and extrusion from a 3D-printing nozzle. Prolonged exposure to heat dramatically increases its viscosity—it becomes too thick to be extruded easily.

But when researchers combined lignin with nylon, they found a surprising result: the composite’s room temperature stiffness increased while its melt viscosity decreased. The lignin-nylon material had tensile strength similar to nylon alone and lower viscosity, in fact, than conventional ABS or high impact polystyrene.

The scientists conducted neutron scattering at the High Flux Isotope Reactor and used advanced microscopy at the Center for Nanophase Materials Science—both DOE Office of Science User Facilities at ORNL—to explore the composite’s molecular structure. They found that the combination of lignin and nylon “appeared to have almost a lubrication or plasticizing effect on the composite,” noted Naskar. “Structural characteristics of lignin are critical to enhance 3D printability of the materials,” said ORNL’s Ngoc Nguyen who collaborated on the project. Scientists were also able to mix in a higher percentage of lignin—40 to 50 percent by weight—a new achievement in the quest for a lignin-based printing material. ORNL scientists then added 4 to 16 percent carbon fiber into the mix. The new composite heats up more easily, flows faster for speedier printing, and results in a stronger product.

‘Cool’ Textile Automatically Regulates Amount of Heat that Passes Through It

Made from specially engineered infrared-sensitive yarn, which responds to changes in the temperature and humidity of a person’s skin by dynamically collapsing or expanding the structure of its fibers, the newly-developed textile shows great potential in the development of clothing systems capable of autonomously adapting to demanding environments.

The human body absorbs and sheds much of its heat in the form of infrared radiation. Most textiles trap this energy, which keeps us warm in cold weather. However, the development of a material that is able to shed this energy, and thus passively cool the body, has remained a challenge. While other materials have achieved radiative cooling in various forms, through textiles that can reflect sunlight and also allow heat radiating from a person’s body to escape, none are responsive to environmental changes or possess the ability to regulate both heating and cooling. The base yarn for the new infrared-adaptive textile is created with fibers made of two different synthetic materials — one absorbs water and the other repels it. The strands are coated with carbon nanotubes, a special class of lightweight, carbon-based, conductive metal.Because materials in the fibers both resist and absorb water, the fibers warp when exposed to humidity such as that surrounding a sweating body.

That distortion brings the strands of yarn closer together, which does two things. First, it opens the pores in the textile. This has a small cooling effect because it allows heat to escape. Second, and most importantly, it modifies the electromagnetic coupling between the carbon nanotubes in the coating.

Professor YuHuang Wang, also from the University of Maryland said “It’s a very simplified way to think of it, but imagine bringing two antennae close together to regulate the kind of electromagnetic wave they pick up. When the fibers are brought closer together, the radiation they interact with changes. In clothing, that means the fabric interacts with the heat radiating from the human body.”

Depending on the tuning, the textile either blocks infrared radiation or allows it to pass through. The reaction is almost instant, so before people realize they’re getting hot, the garment could already be cooling them down. On the flip side, as a body cools down, the dynamic gating mechanism works in reverse to trap in heat.“The results of testing the material show that the textile was able to alter heat radiation by over 35% as it adjusted to the surrounding relative humidity,” the scientists said.

“The heat-adapting meta-fibers can be knit, dyed and washed similarly to other performance fabrics and are compatible with current commercial processes.”

Cut Resistant Clothing for the Glass and Metal Industry: CutPRO®

Cut resistant fabrics have been developed following thousands of injuries suffered by individuals in industry, homeland security, and extreme sports. Now, UK-based PPSS Group is urging product designers to think innovatively about the potential applications of its technical textile, Cut-Tex® PRO.

Since its inception, cut resistant fabric Cut-Tex® PRO has been effectively used in slash resistant clothing for law enforcement, security, and prisons and corrections personnel, as well as bite resistant clothing for healthcare professionals. Following extensive research and collaboration, the company launched its range of cut resistant clothing for the glass and metal industry: CutPRO®. CEO Robert Kaiser comments: “Since the beginning, we have been approached by individuals looking to use Cut-Tex® PRO for theft-proof beach bags, travel cases, storage protection, and even animal welfare. Whilst we cannot guarantee effective- ness in all applications without thorough testing, we have been delighted to work with so many innovative thinkers eager to use Cut-Tex® PRO as a solution for their  product.” The key benefits of fabric are its versatility and all-round performance. Not only does Cut-Tex® PRO offer EN388:2016 Level E cut resistance (ANSI Level 5), unlike alternatives, its protective properties are enhanced by the highest levels of tear and puncture resistance, decreasing the risk of sharp objects penetrating the fabric. It is also washable, lightweight and kind to skin, offering unlimited possibilities for developing new or existing products.

At pH 6.6, Cut-Tex®PRO has a pH value similar to that of water (usually between 6.5 and 8.5). This makes it an extremely low risk skin irritation fabric. Used in clothing for homeland security, workers in manufacturing, and healthcare professionals, it will maintain the skin’s natural balance whilst providing outstanding protection from cuts, slashes, and even human bites.

Robert Kaiser said that; “We are keen to partner with anyone who shares our excitement for the future of cut resistant fabric, and hope that new and innovative applications will help us to advance the performance and capabilities of Cut-Tex® PRO over the coming years.”

Kraig Biocraft Develops Silkworm Strain For USA Army

Kraig Biocraft Laboratories, developer of spider silk based fibres, has developed a strain of genetically engineered silkworms which produces fibres that have the physical properties more suited for use in protective textiles. The development has come under the company’s contract with the US Army. The company will scale up the production of new fibres.

Tentatively called Dragon Silk 2.0, this new strain is the next evolution in the development of protective fibres, built upon the company’s existing Dragon Silk, and is a further example of the company’s ability to adapt and tailor the properties of its recombinant spider silk materials to meet end market performance requirements. Through the use of its fibre performance testing capabilities, paired with a select breeding programme, the company created a strain that is stronger, yet less elastic, than the original Dragon Silk.

Specifically created in response to input from the Army, based on requirements for antiballistic applications, this new strain of recombinant spider silk silk- worms is the second phase of the company’s development agreement with the Army. Kraig Labs delivered shootpack panels to the Army, earlier this summer, made of its original Dragon Silk material and those panels are awaiting testing. “When the Army chose to award the second phase of this project we knew that we were given a great opportunity to prove the power of our technology and our approach using silkworms,” said COO, Jon Rice. “Today we’re thrilled to announce that our work was a success and that we now have a line of silkworms that produce a recombinant spider silk better matched for the demands of protective textile applications. We expect this new strain will play a critical role in our expansion and commercialisation of spider silk far beyond the market for bullet proof vests.”

Kraig Biocraft Laboratories Begins Scale Up Of Second Generation Dragon Silk

Consistent with the Company’s history of creating performance driven recombinant spider silk, this new material was specially designed at Kraig Labs’ Michigan research headquarters for application in protective textiles, where increased strength and decreased flexibility are expected to provide improved protection.

Scale up of Dragon Silk 2.0 is well underway, with the production team already raising tens of thousands of the new transgenic silkworms at the Company’s US based pilot production facility. Over the next 30 days, Kraig Labs anticipates scaling up production volumes of this new silkworm strain into the millions, as it prepares to create the first silk threads and fabrics made of this next generation recombinant spider silk.

Further, the Company is laying the groundwork to partner with experts in multicomponent thread design and spinning, to develop new specialty threads blending the performance spider silk with other traditional materials. This work is expected to develop threads and fabrics focused specifically on products for the perfor- mance wear and other closely linked market segments.

“The ability to rapidly scale up this newly announced material, from initial testing to pilot scale production, is a major differentiator in our approach, which utilizes silkworms and the existing global silk infrastructure,” said COO, Jon Rice. “The current global infrastructure, equipment and skilled labor, is able to produce more than 150,000 metric tons of conventional silk per year. Our recombinant spider silk silkworm technology is a direct drop-in replacement for traditional silkworms and allows us to move quickly, with minimal investment, to bring new products to market.”

Future scale up of Dragon Silk 2.0, as well as the Company’s other lines of recombinant spider silk silkworms, is expected to be transferred to the Company’s subsidiary Prodigy Textiles and its operations in Vietnam, while the Company’s US facility remains focused on the development of next generation materials.

Ahlstrom-Munksjö Launches New Surgical Fabric

Ahlstrom-Munksjö, a leader in fibre-based materials, has announced the launch of its new ViroSēl fabric, constructed for the most critical areas of a surgical gown, designed to keep medical professionals protected and comfortable.

ViroS l is Ahlstrom-Munksjö’s next generation Breathable Viral Barrier (BVB) surgical fabric that has a specially formulated design that provides the opportunity to create robust seam seals for highly critical areas of a surgical gown, the company reports.

“We leveraged our BVB product development and manufacturing experience to create a fabric that can be reliably used in the most protective and comfortable surgical gowns on the market,” said Jason Beard, product platform leader, Medical, Ahlstrom-Munksjö. ViroS l is a tri-laminate fabric constructed to be impervious, breathable and comfortable. The outer layer is fluid repellent and durable. The barrier layer has a monolithic film membrane making it impervious to liquids, viruses and bacteria. The chemical composition of the film itself allows moisture vapor to pass through it, keeping the surgical staff cool and dry. Finally, the darker inner layer was designed to reduce shadowing, and is soft to the touch which makes it comfortable to wear for long periods of time.Surgeries like Cesarean sections, gastric and cardiac often have a substantial amount of fluids involved and are lengthy to complete. This means protection and comfort are essential for the medical professionals wearing the surgical gown. Infection control is imperative as there is risk to the patient and staff to potentially come into contact with these fluids. International in- dustry standards are used to test and measure the barrier performance for liquids and blood-borne pathogens for materials used in protective clothing like surgical gowns. ViroS l passes these stringent standards providing the impervious protection needed in the surgical environment, the manufacturer explains.

Filter Media for Air Pollution Control Applications

Ahlstrom-Munksjö also announced the launch of Ahlstrom-Munksjö Extia 1000, breakthrough, highly durable, filtration media designed to extend filtration lifetime for air pollution control applications,  helping to protect people and the environment. Extending filtration lifetime by more than 40%, helping customers to extend the operational duration, before needing to change the filters. “Giuseppe Costa, VP Product Development Filtration and Performance said “Due to its unique design, Extia 1000 dramatically extends filtration lifetime; it also delivers highly effective removal of coarse particles at over three times lower level of pressure drop.”

Graphene Unlocks New Potential For ‘Smart Textiles’

The quest to create affordable, durable and mass-produced ‘smart textiles’ has been given fresh impetus through the use of the wonder material Graphene.

An international team of scientists, led by Professor Monica Craciun from the University of Exeter Engineering department, has pioneered a new technique to create fully electronic fibres that can be incorporated into the production of everyday clothing. Currently, wearable electronics are achieved by essentially gluing devices to fabrics, which can mean they are too rigid and susceptible to malfunctioning. The new research instead integrates the electronic devices into the fabric of the material, by coating electronic fibres with light-weight, durable components that will allow images to be shown directly on the fabric. The research team believe that the discovery could revolutionise the creation of wearable electronic devices for use in a range of every day applications, as well as health monitoring, such as heart rates and blood pressure, and medical diagnostics.

The international collaborative research, which includes experts from the Centre for Graphene Science at the University of Exeter, the Universities of Aveiro and Lisbon in Portugal, and CenTexBel in Belgium, is published in the scientific journal Flexible Electronics. Professor Craciun, co-author of the research said: “For truly wearable electronic devices to be achieved, it is vital that the components are able to be incorporated within the material, and not simply added to it.”

Dr Elias Torres Alonso, Research Scientist at Graphenea and former PhD student in Professor Craciun’s team at Exeter added “By weaving the graphene fibres into the fabric, we have created a new technique to all the full integration of electronics into textiles.” At just one atom thick, graphene is the thinnest substance capable of conducting electricity. It is very flexible and is one of the strongest known materials. The race has been on for scientists and engineers to adapt graphene for the use in wearable electronic devices in recent years.This new research used existing polypropylene fibres – typically used in a host of commercial applications in the textile industry – to attach the new, graphene-based electronic fibres to create touch-sensor and light-emitting devices. The new technique means that the fabrics can incorporate truly wearable displays without the need for electrodes, wires of additional materials.

Ipeker Makes a Difference in Textile Products with Vegan Fabric Production

Ipeker company, founded in 1930, started its business life with the production of silk in Ottoman period at the end of the 1800s and then continued with fabric manufacturing. Ipeker, one of the most important companies of the world, started to use vegan fabrics produced with V-Label certificate in home textile.

Currently exporting to 52 countries, Ipeker has completed the testing process and produces vegan fabrics with the V-Label certificate given by the European Vegetarian Union. Using its experience in home textiles, the company is the pioneer of the world in this field. With offices in Germany, England and Italy, Ipeker serves with vegan and vegan cupro fabrics in a wide range of countries including Germany, France, Italy, America, Japan, Australia and Canada.

Ipeker, is the first and only manufacturer position in cupro fabric in Turkey, working hard on the production of vegan fabrics to produce more environmentally friendly fabrics. Ipeker Board Member İhsan Ipeker, who stated that there is no animal protein at any stage of the produced fabrics said; “This is guaranteed by DNA testing. Its are also stated as process in the Oeko-Tex certifications. We are the first company in the world to realize this. Our fabrics travel around the world with TR code. This is another source of pride for us.”

Vegan Cupro Fabric slow down the aging process

The vegan cupro fabric, which is produced from cotton wastes, is mixed into the soil within three months when it is buried. With this fabric, the company aims to protect the rights of life rather than using animals as a product. In addition, the company Ipeker argues that animals are not a property of people, even a piece of their bodies should not be used for the comfort of people. This fabric, which is sensitive to human skin, contains the least amount of detergent on it. It slows down permeating chemicals used in washing to human skin. It has climatic properties in terms of skin sensitivity. Thanks to its non-electrifying feature, it enables the body functions to work more smoothly.

In addition, Ipeker developed Vegan Sleep Technologies as a result of the work of its 35 people R & D team. The anti-aging pillows produced by the company eliminate the factors that accelerate aging, slow down this process as much as possible.

Turkish Company Produces, German Army Uses

Developed by the Turkish company İltema, the fabric which was able to heat dissipate for a long time with low voltage was tested by the company in Germany and found successful. The fabric used by divers in the German army allows divers to stay bottom of the sea for longer.

İltema, which is focuses on heat dissipation technology established by two Turkish entrepreneurs at Dokuz Eylül University Technology Development Zone (DEPARK) continues to work on the development of new generation high-tech materials. The company, which started working in 2016 with the support of TÜBİTAK, has achieved successful results in heating technologies. İltema exhibits its products at the World Business Angels Investment Forum (WBAF). The company manufactures fabrics with yarns which are specially developed and coated with solutions. 100% locally produced fabrics heats with varying voltages. Fabrics which was heated with low-voltage do not threaten human health. Products can get heated by 48 volts and below.

Heat-Dissipating Fabrics With Low-Voltage Were First Exported To Germany

Smart fabrics, which preferred by the world’s leading countries and commercialised as “a new generation of electric blankets”, tested to be usedhybrid cars and in the defense industry in Germany and Turkey. The smart fabric, which was first exported to Germany, is used by the company there to make clothes produced for the use of divers in the German army. The divers of the German army, thanks to the clothes produced by using these fabrics, increased the 6-minute time stay in the bottom of the sea to 15 minutes.

The firm, which has been exporting to kazakhstan a tent that does not the snow settle on it, also has an anti-icing system on roads and stairs. This fabric, which is more cost effective, performs well in outdoor products such as automotive and defense industry. This fabric which is the most important feature is saving energy, saves 40 percent of heating in electric vehicles.

The company, which produces solar-heated coats for long-term stays in outside, also prepares heated tents and sleeping bags. In addition to being able to warm up with daylight, the jacket can also be charge mobile phones.