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KARL MAYER GROUP: Natural fibre composites and knit to shape products at JEC World 2024 (c) FUSE GmbH
26.02.2024

KARL MAYER GROUP: Natural fibre composites and knit to shape products at JEC World 2024

At this year's JEC World 2024 from 5 to 7 March, KARL MAYER GROUP will be exhibiting with KARL MAYER Technical Textiles and its STOLL Business

One focus of the exhibition will be non-crimp fabrics and tapes made from bio-based yarn materials for the reinforcement of composites.

"While our business with multiaxial and spreading technology for processing conventional technical fibres such as carbon or glass continues to do well, we are seeing increasing interest in the processing of natural fibres into composites. That's why we have a new product in our trade fair luggage for the upcoming JEC World: an alpine ski in which, among other things, hemp fibre fabrics have been used," reveals Hagen Lotzmann, Vice President Sales KARL MAYER Technische Textilien.

The winter sports equipment is the result of a subsidised project. The hemp tapes for this were supplied by FUSE GmbH and processed into non-crimp fabrics on the COP MAX 5 multiaxial warp knitting machine in the KARL MAYER Technical Textiles technical centre.

At this year's JEC World 2024 from 5 to 7 March, KARL MAYER GROUP will be exhibiting with KARL MAYER Technical Textiles and its STOLL Business

One focus of the exhibition will be non-crimp fabrics and tapes made from bio-based yarn materials for the reinforcement of composites.

"While our business with multiaxial and spreading technology for processing conventional technical fibres such as carbon or glass continues to do well, we are seeing increasing interest in the processing of natural fibres into composites. That's why we have a new product in our trade fair luggage for the upcoming JEC World: an alpine ski in which, among other things, hemp fibre fabrics have been used," reveals Hagen Lotzmann, Vice President Sales KARL MAYER Technische Textilien.

The winter sports equipment is the result of a subsidised project. The hemp tapes for this were supplied by FUSE GmbH and processed into non-crimp fabrics on the COP MAX 5 multiaxial warp knitting machine in the KARL MAYER Technical Textiles technical centre.

The STOLL Business Unit will be focussing on thermoplastic materials. Several knit to shape parts with a textile outer surface and a hardened inner surface will be on display. The double-face products can be made from different types of yarn and do not need to be back-moulded for use as side door panels or housing shells, for example. In addition, the ready-to-use design saves on waste and yarn material.

DITF: Biopolymers from bacteria protect technical textiles Photo: DITF
Charging a doctor blade with molten PHA using a hot-melt gun
23.02.2024

DITF: Biopolymers from bacteria protect technical textiles

Textiles for technical applications often derive their special function via the application of coatings. This way, textiles become, for example wind and water proof or more resistant to abrasion. Usually, petroleum-based substances such as polyacrylates or polyurethanes are used. However, these consume exhaustible resources and the materials can end up in the environment if handled improperly. Therefore, the German Institutes of Textile and Fiber Research Denkendorf (DITF) are researching materials from renewable sources that are recyclable and do not pollute the environment after use. Polymers that can be produced from bacteria are here of particular interest.

Textiles for technical applications often derive their special function via the application of coatings. This way, textiles become, for example wind and water proof or more resistant to abrasion. Usually, petroleum-based substances such as polyacrylates or polyurethanes are used. However, these consume exhaustible resources and the materials can end up in the environment if handled improperly. Therefore, the German Institutes of Textile and Fiber Research Denkendorf (DITF) are researching materials from renewable sources that are recyclable and do not pollute the environment after use. Polymers that can be produced from bacteria are here of particular interest.

These biopolymers have the advantage that they can be produced in anything from small laboratory reactors to large production plants. The most promising biopolymers include polysaccharides, polyamides from amino acids and polyesters such as polylactic acid or polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs), all of which are derived from renewable raw materials. PHAs is an umbrella term for a group of biotechnologically produced polyesters. The main difference between these polyesters is the number of carbon atoms in the repeat unit. To date, they have mainly been investigated for medical applications. As PHAs products are increasingly available on the market, coatings made from PHAs may also be increasingly used in technical applications in the future.

The bacteria from which the PHAs are obtained grow with the help of carbohydrates, fats and an increased CO2 concentration and light with suitable wavelength.

The properties of PHA can be adapted by varying the structure of the repeat unit. This makes polyhydroxyalkanoates a particularly interesting class of compounds for technical textile coatings, which has hardly been investigated to date. Due to their water-repellent properties, which stem from their molecular structure, and their stable structure, polyhydroxyalkanoates have great potential for the production of water-repellent, mechanically resilient textiles, such as those in demand in the automotive sector and for outdoor clothing.

The DITF have already carried out successful research work in this area. Coatings on cotton yarns and fabrics made of cotton, polyamide and polyester showed smooth and quite good adhesion. The PHA types for the coating were both procured on the open market and produced by the research partner Fraunhofer IGB. It was shown that the molten polymer can be applied to cotton yarns by extrusion through a coating nozzle. The molten polymer was successfully coated onto fabric using a doctor blade. The length of the molecular side chain of the PHA plays an important role in the properties of the coated textile. Although PHAs with medium-length side chains are better suited to achieving low stiffness and a good textile handle, their wash resistance is low. PHAs with short side chains are suitable for achieving high wash and abrasion resistance, but the textile handle is somewhat stiffer.

The team is currently investigating how the properties of PHAs can be changed in order to achieve the desired resistance and textile properties in equal measure. There are also plans to formulate aqueous formulations for yarn and textile finishing. This will allow much thinner coatings to be applied to textiles than is possible with molten PHAs.

Other DITF research teams are investigating whether PHAs are also suitable for the production of fibers and nonwovens.

Source:

Deutsche Institute für Textil- und Faserforschung (DITF)

adidas: Study on effect of pressure in sports (c) adidas AG
19.02.2024

adidas: Study on effect of pressure in sports

Under adidas’ ambition to help athletes overcome high pressure moments in sport, it has teamed up with leading sport neuroscientists, neuro11, to understand the impact it has within a game of football, basketball, and golf during penalty shootouts, high-stake putts and must-make free-throws.

Working with Emiliano Martínez, Ludvig Åberg, Nneka Ogwumike, Rose Zhang, and Stina Blackstenius, as well as amateurs in the game, adidas and neuro11 delved into their minds to identify and analyse where pressure peaks, to help athletes across the globe to better understand it.

Understanding from this study that grassroots athletes and their elite counterparts experience similarly intense levels of pressure in the biggest sporting moments - but elite athletes were up to 40% more effective at managing pressure during these moments1 - a toolbox of techniques has been developed, built from the specific findings, to assist next-gen athletes in managing and overcoming the feeling within their game.

Under adidas’ ambition to help athletes overcome high pressure moments in sport, it has teamed up with leading sport neuroscientists, neuro11, to understand the impact it has within a game of football, basketball, and golf during penalty shootouts, high-stake putts and must-make free-throws.

Working with Emiliano Martínez, Ludvig Åberg, Nneka Ogwumike, Rose Zhang, and Stina Blackstenius, as well as amateurs in the game, adidas and neuro11 delved into their minds to identify and analyse where pressure peaks, to help athletes across the globe to better understand it.

Understanding from this study that grassroots athletes and their elite counterparts experience similarly intense levels of pressure in the biggest sporting moments - but elite athletes were up to 40% more effective at managing pressure during these moments1 - a toolbox of techniques has been developed, built from the specific findings, to assist next-gen athletes in managing and overcoming the feeling within their game.

Covering in-depth detail on what pressure looks like within each sport, how it has been proven to impact specific in-game moments, the brain zones that neuro11’s state-of-the-art brain technology measures and the main insights from each athlete’s training session, each report sets out to support all athletes in accessing the optimal zone - the brain state in which they perform at their best.

Rounded off with science-backed tips that reveal the optimal area of a goal to strike a penalty, how to use time to regain focus before netting a free throw, as well as the impact of dwell time on putting in golf – the guides are shaped around enhancing mental focus during some of the most pressured moments across sport.

1 Findings captured during athlete training sessions, as part of adidas SS24 Brand Campaign, in collaboration with neuro11 (November ’23- January ’24). Study carried out with Emiliano Martínez, Ludvig Åberg, Nneka Ogwumike, Rose Zhang, and Stina Blackstenius, in addition to 5 grassroot athletes.

Source:

adidas AG

07.02.2024

RadiciGroup’s roadmap to a sustainable future

“From Earth to Earth”: The new plan defines goals and concrete actions in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) areas to foster value creation for all stakeholders and put new sustainability regulatory requirements at the centre of attention.

A project, designed to enhance RadiciGroup's transparency and commitment to develop a responsible business along its entire value chain from an economic, social and environmental perspective and focus on the ever more widespread and stringent sustainability regulatory requirements. These are the features and goals of the Sustainability Plan presented by the Group and called "From Earth to Earth", precisely to emphasize the intent to focus on the Earth and future generations.

“From Earth to Earth”: The new plan defines goals and concrete actions in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) areas to foster value creation for all stakeholders and put new sustainability regulatory requirements at the centre of attention.

A project, designed to enhance RadiciGroup's transparency and commitment to develop a responsible business along its entire value chain from an economic, social and environmental perspective and focus on the ever more widespread and stringent sustainability regulatory requirements. These are the features and goals of the Sustainability Plan presented by the Group and called "From Earth to Earth", precisely to emphasize the intent to focus on the Earth and future generations.

In the context of a complex and constantly changing scenario, the Group has therefore decided to capitalize on the goals achieved and look beyond them with a plan defining the medium-term targets and the actions to be taken to fulfil them and covering all areas considered to be "material”, i.e., relevant from the point of view of ESG and financial risks, opportunities and impacts. Indeed, the ultimate goal of "From Earth to Earth" is to support business continuity and the growth of the company and all its stakeholders.

The project was the result of a multi-year collaboration with Deloitte, which contributed an external and objective viewpoint on the definition of the material targets and themes. However, it was not an armchair exercise, but the result of an extensive listening process involving internal and external stakeholders, all of whom were sustainability experts who helped define a shortlist of strategic themes for both the Group and its main stakeholders. These issues were then analysed in detail using working tables on the different themes to identify the objectives in Environmental, Social and Governance areas and the related concrete actions needed to achieve them, in line with the European decarbonization and energy transition policies and the
United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, a global blueprint for sustainable growth.

In particular, RadiciGroup’s environmental goals include: a 20% increase and differentiation in renewable source electricity consumption, an 80% reduction in total direct greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 compared to 2011, attention to water consumption to limit the impact on local communities and biodiversity, the extension of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology to measure the environmental impact of 70% of the products (in terms of weight) manufactured by the entire Group, collaboration among the various actors in the supply chain from an ecodesign perspective and the search for increasingly more sustainable and circular packaging solutions.