Textile Technology section
Kornit Digital: acquisition of Custom Gateway
The industrial digital printing technologies supplier Kornit Digital Ltd., Rosh Ha’Ayin/Israel, has acquired Custom Gateway Ltd., Macclesfield/UK, and thus expands the cloud software workflow portfolio for end-to-end management of on-demand apparel and home décor production. Custom Gateway’s robust and functionality-rich cloud platform is suitable for both B2B and B2C business models and handles all steps of efficient on-demand production. The platform enables content sourcing, creation, content management and display at the front end. Orders created are captured by an order management system and are directed to the appropriate back-end production sites using sophisticated routing algorithms. The entire process from order creation to shipment is enriched with integrations to existing IT environments, data-driven decision-making and business intelligence analytics. Supplementing Kornit’s Konnect platform for visibility and control of print operations, Custom Gateway’s platform offers customers valuable business insights for agility in the face of market dynamics and disruption.
Navis Tubetex: Lab Spray System is comparable to production machines
The current Covid-19 pandemic has even further highlighted the importance of quick reaction to market forces especially regarding Personal Protection Equipment. Indeed, an efficient and accurate transfer of lab testing results is key to reducing product development times to the production phase.
The finishing machine manufacturer Navis Tubetex, Lexington, SC/USA, presents with its brand Consultex the new Lab Spray System in spray application technology. For this system, all of the machine components are installed into a single, compact unit which works with the same control features and precision application as the larger production machines. This guarantees a very good transfer of lab results to the production scale. The Lab System’s working width is 800 mm and can be ordered as a one- or two-sided spray configuration.
The Consultex Rotary Spray System is characterized by a streak-free uniformity of coverage and precise chemistry application amounts which is achieved via counter-rotating disks in combination with one full-width spray window. These same features have also proven successful for Consultex applications of print primer required in digital printing processes.
Epson: Robustelli and For.Tex to merge
Seiko Epson Corp., Tokyo/Japan, has announced that group companies Fratelli Robustelli Srl, Villa Guardia/Italy, and For.Tex Srl, Fino Mornasco/Italy, will merge. The 2 companies are core Epson subsidiaries in the direct-to-fabric (DTF) textile printing sector. Robustelli develops and manufactures textile printers while For.Tex engages primarily in textile ink sales and support. Epson sees textile printing as one of the most promising growth areas for its printing solutions business. Growth will be fueled by a shift from traditional plate-based analog printing to digital printing solutions. Epson sees substantial opportunity to leverage its inkjet technology to expand its business and is thus strengthening its textile printing product lineup and operations. The merger is scheduled for completion by the end of 2020.
Mahlo: next generation pattern control system
Large, artistic graphics, timeless glen check or exact pinstripes. This presents an increasing challenge for textile manufacturers to produce straight weft and straightened patterns. Here, the alignment according to the design often plays a greater role than the weft insertion. The manufacturer of measuring, control and automation systems Mahlo GmbH & Co. KG, Saal a.d. Donau/Germany, solves this problem with its improved Patcontrol PCS-20 system for pattern recognition and warp control. It straightens bow and skew distortions in technical textiles just as reliably as in terry cloth. Even goods that cannot be detected with conventional scanning systems do not pose a problem for pattern recognition.
The system uses camera technology to detect the position of the pattern and automatically and continuously determines the pattern repeat, measures the product width, and together with a straightener straightens the product distortion based on the print pattern.
New long-life LED lighting generates the maximum brightness on the market, thereby extending the scanning range for darker goods. Improved cameras allow brightness control by gain and exposure time. More than 2 cameras can also be connected per measuring point. This allows a higher resolution and even more accurate results. A Gigabit connection allows the transmission of large amounts of data. Using a mounting aid, the exact camera adjustment can be done easily and quickly. A compact interface box at the measuring point integrates the Patcontrol PCS-20 even more easily into the existing plant.
The system is also integrated into the mSmart digitalization concept. Users, machines and processes are networked with each other and meet all the requirements of Industry 4.0.
Monforts: sustainable leadership for GtA with new Montex wide width lines
Following the commissioning of 2 new Monforts Montex wide-width stenter lines and additional environmental management equipment at its plant in Germany, GtA - Gesellschaft für textile Ausrüstung mbH, Neresheim/Germany, is aiming to be the first textile finishing company to become entirely CO2-neutral in the manufacture of all of its products by 2025.
The substrates of choice for digital printing are 100% polyester warp knits. The knitted construction has the advantage of elasticity, which is a plus in terms of flexibility for installers. Critically, the warp knitted fabrics have extremely smooth surfaces which is becoming increasingly important due to the general move away from PVC coatings which were the standard in the past.
The purpose-built plant on a greenfield site was initially equipped with a fully-automated, 72 m long Monforts installation comprising a washing machine integrated with a 3.6 m wide, 7-chamber Montex stenter. The 2 new Montex stenter lines from the manufacturer of textile machinery A. Monforts Textilmaschinen GmbH & Co. KG, Mönchengladbach/Germany are both in expanded working widths of 5.6 m. They include the Smart Sensor system for the optimized maintenance planning of key mechanical wear components on the stenters. A comprehensive overview of the condition of all parts at any time is now available for operators within the highly intuitive Qualitex visualization software.
The GtA plant, which operates in near-cleanroom conditions, has also been equipped with proprietary technology to fully exploit the Monforts air-to-air heat recovery systems that are now standard with Montex stenters.
Mimaki: technologies of the future together with Digitak
The manufacturer of inkjet digital printers Mimaki Europe B.V., Amsterdam/Netherlands, has focused on technological diversification by installing a direct-to-fabric digital printing line at the Italien digital textile printing company Digitak. This consists of a Mimaki TX300P-1800B printing system with pigment inks and a TR300-1850C coater from Mimaki’s TR series. With its pigment inks, the new direct-to-fabric printing line allows Digitak to explore other related market segments. Thanks to the innovative automatic belt system, the TX300P-1800B guarantees good productivity and high-quality results. A standard of quality that is also boosted by the TR300-1850C fabric pre-treatment system is a coater for ensuring the preparation of fabrics for printing. According to FilippoTaccani, owner of Digitak, another beneficial factor of direct-to-fabric pigment printing technology is the eco-sustainability of the process and its lower environmental impact. Digitak’s already installed a digital printing machine Tiger-1800 in 2019. With this industrial printing system, the company aims to increase production volumes while maintaining the quality standards and further optimizing costs.
Sensient: sale of Digital Ink Business
The manufacturer of colors, flavors and other specialty ingredients Sensient Technologies Corp., Milwaukee, WI/USA, has entered into a definitive agreement to sell 100% of its shares of Sensient Imaging Technologies SA, Morges/Switzerland, and certain other assets related to the production of inks to Sun Chemical Corp., Parsippany, NJ/USA, and its parent company DIC Corp., Tokyo/Japan. The transaction is expected to be finalized in the 2nd quarter (Q2) of 2020.
Sensient Imaging Technologies delivers innovative digital technology for digital inkjet printing. The company’s experience in water-based solutions has resulted in innovations for a number of industrial markets and the ability to align these developments with Sun will further strengthen this proposition.
SPGPrints/MTEX: partnership to serve emerging segments in textile printing
The provider of digital printing solutions, software engineering and service providers Mtex NS S.A., Meães/Portugal, announces a new partnership with the manufacturer of printing machines SPGPrints, Boxmeer/Netherlands. Both companies announce a strategic agreement from 2020 extending into 2022.
Over the past 6 months, Mtex NS and SPGPrints R&D teams have been working together to incorporate SPGPrints’ specific digital textile application know-how into the unique digital printing solutions of Mtex NS. Many tests have been conducted which lead to a series of technological and operational adaptions to fit the Mtex digital equipment to the textile customer needs.
The partnership includes technology for sublimation and pigment printing. SPGPrints is in the position of bringing more sustainable solutions to the textile printing market. Mtex digital printing equipment provides a platform to create new sustainable digital textile printing solutions alongside SPGPrints’ proprietary Archer Technology platforms Pike and Javelin.
SPGPrints: classification in ZDHC audit
Society has become increasingly aware that certain chemicals are extremely damaging to human health and the environment. The manufacturer of printing machines SPGPrints, Boxmeer/Netherlands, has always taken responsibility to find sustainable printing solutions and has been working to meet all common sustainability standards with their digital printing products meant for textiles. In that light, SPGPrints has opted to comply the ZDHC Foundation Roadmap to Zero Program.
The ZDHC Foundation has created a platform where companies within the sports, fashion, luxury and outdoor industries work closely together to phase out the usage of hazardous substances. Intensive testing of all reactive inks for digital printing of textiles from SPGPrints, followed by a recent audit, performed by a 3rd-party, has resulted in the highest possible ZDHC compliance: the level 3 conformance.
ESMA: digital printing on textiles
The European Association of Screen Printing Equipment Manufacturers (ESMA), Sint-Joris-Winge/Belgium, and the German Institutes of Textile and Fiber Research (DITF), Denkendorf/Germany, will host the first comprehensive course on all theoretical and practical aspects of digital printing technology for textile applications. The course Digital Textile Printing will take place from April 21-24, 2020 in Denkendorf.
Participants will receive insights in the procedure of inkjet printing on textile materials and accompanying topics such as textile chemistry and pre-treatment, ink formulation, curing techniques, color management and characterization of textile materials and printing quality. In addition, the workflow in digital printing will be shown in a Textile Micro-factory environment. The practical training will be offered in small teams and will highlight some of the topics that are discussed in the theoretical part. Participants will learn and exercise the workflow and each required single step in digital printing on textiles.
There has been a visible shift from analogue to digital taking place in segments such as apparel or home textiles. Various estimates expect a growth of digital textile printing between 6% and 20% in the next decade. Moreover, the ongoing change to digital demands a higher level of education on using the new technologies: understanding color management, specifics of inkjet and its implementation into existing business concepts. The new Textile Division of ESMA is considered by the association as the home for the textile printing manufacturers. Their target group includes all manufacturers of products used in textile printing workflow (digital or screen) and the focus areas of the division are sustainability, standardization, color management and regulations.
For further information: www.esma.com