Textile Technology section
Toyobo: JV for new plant for automobile airbag yarns
A joint venture (JV) company to produce yarns for automobile airbags will be set up by the specialty chemical company Toyobo Co., Ltd., Osaka/Japan, in agreement with Indorama Polyester Industries PCL (IPI), Bangkok/Thailand, a subsidiary of chemical company Indorama Ventures Public Co. Ltd. (IVL), Bangkok. The joint company plans to build a new plant on the IPI factory site in Rayong Province, Thailand, and start operations in Q1/2022.
The airbag market is expected to continue growing at 3-4% annually thanks to an increase in the number of airbags installed per vehicle and growth in the proportion of vehicles equipped with airbags in emerging economies. In 2014, Toyobo and IVL jointly acquired PHP Fibers GmbH, Wuppertal/Germany, an airbag yarn maker that held the second-largest share in the world at that time.
The new 50/50 JV will carry the name Toyobo-Indorama Advanced Fibers Co., Ltd. (TIAF) and is scheduled to be established in November 2020. The expected capacity is put at a maximum of 11,000 tons/year.
Lectra: Thierry Caye appointed Senior Vice President R&D
The supplier of integrated technology solutions for textile and flexible materials Lectra SA, Paris/France, has appointed Thierry Caye as Senior Vice President Research & Development.
Caye’s extensive experience will help accelerate the development of new disruptive offers and the transition of the company’s flagship historical offers in line with Industry 4.0 principles. He began his career in 1995 in IS software development at Alten GmbH, Coburg/Germany, before joining C2I Ingénierie, Charnizay/France, in late 1996 as Project Manager and later Technical Director.
He joined Tessi International, Urdorf/Switzerland, in 2005 as a Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) specialist when C2I was purchased to strengthen the software division of the group. In his continued career at Tessi, successively held the roles of Engineering Director, Deputy Director and Senior Managing Director of the technology division. Also there, he led the Technologies & Operations division, with a turnover of over €50 million, more than 10 product lines and a staff of 350 people. Caye became a member of the Management Committee and Executive Committee of Tessi International in 2018.
Mahlo: transparency in process control for technical textiles
High-performance technical textiles have to fulfill their task to 100% in order to prevent damage and danger. The final product has to fully strictly meet requirements and gray areas are unacceptable. The processes have to be transparent, so that the user can recognize discrepancies at any time and can react to them.
A prerequisite for a working product, independent of further treatment, is a straight web.
The automatic weft straightener Orthopac RVMC-15 from the manufacturer of measuring, control and automation systems Mahlo GmbH & Co. KG, Saal a.d. Donau/Germany, detects and straightens 97% of all known webs. For s-shaped distortions and non-detectable fabric, the pin wheel straighteners only work only for non-elastic products, however.
This is different with the Orthomax RFMB-15, a fusion of pin wheel and roller straightener. Thanks to combining both technologies, the system minimizes distortions in web as well as elastic knitting. Many textiles made of elastic raschel knitted fabrics already benefit from these advantages.
The next step is monitoring the further processing. With the help of scanners and sensors, the quality control system Qualiscan QMS-12 makes important parameters visible and therefore controllable. By measuring basis weight before and after the coating, one can determine the weight of the single layers.
Lenzing: award for sustainable nonwovens technology
The Austrian State Prize for Innovation is awarded annually by the Federal Ministry for Digital and Economic Affairs, Vienna/Austria, to the most innovative Austrian company. On October 20, 2020, the producer of cellulosic fibers, Lenzing AG, Lenzing/Austria, was awarded the prize as recognition for its innovative achievements concerning sustainable nonwovens technology.
With the Lenzing web technology the company has developed a patented technology for a promising solution for eco-friendly products that counteracts the pollution of the environment by plastics.
Sustainable and eco-friendly nonwovens are produced from the renewable raw material wood. These are not only plastic-free, they also score points for their environmental friendliness.
The pollution of the environment by plastics is an important problem of our time. Every day, worldwide millions of hygiene products and wipes end up in garbage and sewage. Most of them consist of up to 80% polyester or other fossil, non-biodegradable materials which remain in the environment as pollution.
Oerlikon/Procter & Gamble: exclusive collaboration for high-class wipes
In a global marketplace, collaboration is just as important as competition. This is what motivated Procter & Gamble Corp., Cincinnati, OH/USA, and Oerlikon Nonwoven, Neumünster/Germany – Teknoweb Materials srl., Palazzo Pignano/Italy, to agree on an exclusive license agreement to market and sell the Phantom platform worldwide.
Oerlikon already entered into a strategic partnership with Teknoweb in 2017 aimed at extending the nonwovens production systems portfolio.
The patented process for hybrid nonwovens combines the best of both airlaid and spunmelt technologies to deliver new, flexible ways of creating wet and dry wipes. The Phantom technology offers additional benefits by reducing resources and cost, while increasing overall performance. The exclusive license gives Oerlikon Nonwoven – Teknoweb Materials total access to the patents, know-how, and pilot lines developed by Procter & Gamble. The research and development team at Procter & Gamble continues to support Oerlikon Nonwoven – Teknoweb Materials distribute this technology worldwide. In addition, Oerlikon Nonwoven – Teknoweb Materials have further refined the process into their own Levra technology – an entry-level option which offers tailored production volumes with lower investment costs but is still suitable to be upgraded to the premium Phantom model in the future.
Essentially, Phantom technology was developed to produce hybrid substrates. The spunmelt and airlaid processes are merged into one step to combine cellulose fibers, long fibers such as cotton, or even powders with polymer fibers in unprecedented ways. This technology has clear advantages in terms of resources, performance and cost compared to the previous processes on the market. By removing hydroentanglement, it is no longer necessary to dry the material. Adjusting the process can optimize relevant product characteristics such as softness, strength, dirt absorption, and liquid absorption. In the end, this even increases the quality of the product itself.
Performance Days: digital fair replaces exhibition halls
Due to the increasing number of infections, further international travel bans and company-internal travel restrictions are now threatening.
Since the functional fabric fair Performance Days lives from its international audience, the event from December 9-10, 2020 will not take place at the Messe München, but as a Digital Fair.
Already back in April 2020, Performance Days launched its Digital Fair with various solutions, such as the online sourcing of materials and digitalized trends and colors.
The Performance Forum Jury will again convene for the December 2020 Forum and curate the most innovative and sustainable fabrics and ingredients.
Those wishing to participate can register at www.performancedays.com and gain access to e.g. exclusive trend topics. By logging in to the Digital Fair, visitors can state their preferences and so receive focused match-making to the appropriate exhibitors/suppliers.
Teijin Frontier: oil absorbents to support recovery from Mauritius oil spill
To deal with the heavy oil spill caused by the running aground of the cargo ship Wakashio off the shore of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean, the fiber-product converting company Teijin Frontier Co., Ltd., Tokyo/Japan, will donate its high-performance oil adsorbent sheet to the Government of the Republic of Mauritius. Through Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd., Minato/Japan, 500 kg of this oil adsorbent sheet will be provided, an amount which will allow approx. 10 tons of oil to be adsorbed.
Made of polypropylene fiber nonwovens, Teijin Frontier’s high-performance oil adsorbent sheet can adsorb up to around 20 times its own weight in oil. It is hard to tear and can also be used for wiping off oil deposits.
By means of this donation the Teijin Group will contribute to the area’s recovery from marine pollution and will continue to tackle a range of environmental challenges.
Nova-Institute: call for paper for “Cellulose Fibre Innovation of the year” award
For the first time the innovation award “Cellulose fibre Innovation of the Year” will be granted at the “2nd International Conference on Cellulose Fibres” on February 2-3, 2021 in Cologne/Germany. The hybrid event is organized by the nova-Institute GmbH, Hürth/Germany.
The innovation award “Cellulose Fibre Innovation of the Year” will be granted to the innovative cellulose fiber industry for the development of new technologies and applications.
All producers and inventors along the entire value chain form feedstock to the final product are invited to join the competition. Deadline for submission is November 30, 2020.
Among the applicants, 6 candidates will be nominated for the innovation award by an independent expert jury. Their application documents will be made available for download at the conference website. The nominees will then get the opportunity to hold a 10-minute presentation at the conference or online.
After the presentations, the participants of the conference will elect the final winners of the innovation award “Cellulose Fibre Innovation of the Year 2021”.
Applying to the award is free of charge.
For further information: www.cellulose-fibres.eu/award-application.
Cetex: cooperation for the further development of hybrid rovings
On October 2, 2020, the Cetex Institut gGmbH, Chemnitz/Germany, thermoPre Engineering GmbH, Chemnitz/Germany, and the spinning-mills for high tenacity filament yarns The FilamentFactory GmbH, Bad Hersfeld/Germany, signed a cooperation agreement concerning the development, production and marketing of novel hybrid materials.
In the last 3 years the Cetex institute has developed a plant technology for the production of hybrid rovings. By means of the patented process, different material combinations can be produced according to customer specifications. Material combinations of reinforcing fibers, (glass, basalt, carbon, aramid or high-strength polymer fibers) can be combined with matrix fibers (PP, PET, PA, PPS, PEEK), but also special combinations of different reinforcing fibers or the combination of reinforcing fibers with metal fibers.
Advantages of the new hybrid roving are the torsion-free and completely stretched fiber layer and the associated optimal utilization of the properties of the reinforcing fibers, as well as a good homogeneity.
Under the agreement, the process is jointly developed further by the project partners and transferred to series production.
Edana: discussion on a circular economy for nonwovens
With over 100 delegates in attendance, the 1st edition of the new Circular Nonwovens Forum, held on October 13, 2020, successfully created a new platform for discussion on sustainability and circularity within the nonwovens sector.
Hosted as an online event by the association serving the nonwovens and related industries, Edana, Brussels/Belgium, the forum opened with a keynote speech from Paola Migliorini, the Deputy Head of Unit for Sustainable Production, Products & Consumption on the European Commission’s new Circular Economy Action plan. It was followed by a range of insightful presentations and discussions covering initiatives to address the circularity of AHP plastic waste, the biodegradability and compostability of nonwovens, material innovations, and developments in renewable polypropylene. The presentations were followed by well attended breakout sessions allowing for participants to engage with the speakers.
This forum is planned to be held annually with the next edition scheduled to be held in Brussels in September 2021.