BeaverLake6 Report
BeaverLake6 Report

News about the Global Technical Textiles Industry

 

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Textile World Interview

Richard Seaman, Chairman and CEO of Seaman Corp.

Richard Seaman

The global market for coated fabrics is estimated at $17.3 bn. Seaman Corp., located in Wooster, Oh., USA, is one of the largest suppliers of coated fabrics in North America. The company's major end application markets include architectural structures, geosynthetics, and protective transportation covers. Steve Warner, publisher of BeaverLake6 Report, recently interviewed Richard Seaman, Chairman of the Board and President of Seaman Corp., for the March/April issue of Textile World magazine. Mr. Seaman offers brief looks on how his company is involved in these markets. Click here to read the Textile World interview. Posted March 23, 2015

Front Page News

Freudenberg Invests in New Production Line for Automotive Industry.  The March 24 press release from Freudenberg & Vilene, part of the Freudenberg Nonwovens Group, reported the company is building a new production line for automotive headliners at its Suzhou facility in China. What's interesting in the press release (besides the company news) are some factors they give about the Chinese automotive market. According to the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA), 1.9 million vehicles were sold in China in January 2015, up 13% over the previous January. Also, according to the release, Freudenberg is currently the only company offering in-house printed headliners. Click here to read the press release. Posted March 26, 2015

British Tent Manufacturer Gets Investment Infusion. Secco, a tent manufacturer headquartered in Aldridge, West Midlands, UK, has secured a ₤325,000 (US$528.000) investment through a peer-to-peer lending network. Secco is tha manufacturer of a range of outdoor industry products including tents and motorhome awnings. It sells primarily online and through trade shows. Its brands include Khyam, Flexidome and Ridgidome.  The funds will be used to increase Khyam inventory in preparation for the camping season and also to support the development and launch of a new caravan awning range. Click here to read an article about the investment. Posted March 26, 2015

US Agency Awards Grant for Design of New Ebola Protective Suit. The US Agency for International Development (USAID) has awarded a partnership of Cornell University, International Personnel Protection Inc. (IPP) and Kappler Inc. one of 12 grants from its Fighting Ebola challenge. There were more than 1,500 submitted proposals. The grant will be for the partners to develop a protective suit for healthcare workers re-engineered to be more breathable while still providing leak-free barrier protection, improved hood design and easier removal. Click here to read an interesting article on the Cornell Chronicle website about the development challenges. Posted March 26, 2015

FabricLink Network Announces the Year's Top 10 Innovations.  The trade-to-consumer website FabricLink (FLN) has released its annual Top 10 Innovations Awards for 2014-15. The selections are presented to companies offering exceptional textile-based material technologies that have launched during the past year and are now commercially available. The FLN awards recognize the research and development effort required to create new products that address needs within the many specialty fabrics niche markets such as applications in automotive, civil engineering and military. The 2014-15 awards include products made by 3M, Mount Vernon Mills, Teijin Aramid and Carhartt. Click here to check out all the award-winning products. Posted March 23, 2015   

 

President Obama Creates Innovation Institute Focused on Technical Textiles. The Obama Administration announced yesterday the formation of its 9th manufacturing hub competition for a specific industry. The hub will be called the Revolutionary Fiber and Textiles Manufacturing Innovation Institute. Its focus will be on the development of new fibers and fabrics in the technical textiles industry. The technical textiles hub joins 8 other industries under the National Network for Manufacturing program. All of the hubs are to be overseen by the US Department of Defense. The initital $150 million funding for the technical textiles hub will be $75 million from public funding and $75 million from private investment. The hub will be open to manufacturers, universities and nonprofit organizations. There is no word yet where the hub will be located. Click here to read more. Posted March 19, 2015

Inflatable Boat Manufacturer Awarded $45 Million Contract. Louisiana-based US shipbuilder Metal Shark has been awarded a $15,309,410 firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for the construction of 7-meter rigid hull inflatable boats (RHIBs) in support of future US Foreign Military Sales (FMS) requirements. The award includes options that, if exercised, will bring the total contract value to $47,408,209. Click here to read the company news release. Posted March 19, 2015

TPP Agreement Negotiations Becoming More Transparent. BeaverLake6 Report has been a critic on the lack of transparency in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations since the first day we began publishing in July 2012. Apparently, the White House feels they are now close enough to reaching an agreement that they have to start mending some Congressional fences and are now making more freely available the full negotiating text, including summaries of each chapter in the agreement. In making an announcement today, chief negotiator Michael Froman said "The Obama administration is committed to maximizing the transparency of U.S. trade negotiations consistent with negotiating the best possible agreement for the American people." Click here to read an article about this on The Hill website. Posted March 18, 2015

Trade Advisory Service Celebrates First Year. We are pleased to note Trade Advisory Service, a website developed by Agathon Associates, is marking its first-year anniversary. Frequent BeaverLake6 Report contributor David Trumbull is the publisher of the website. Mr. Trumbull has more than 20 years of experience in textiles and international trade. Trade Advisory Service is a fee-based subscription service that offers the latest information on US regulations affecting trade including development of new Free Trade Zones, U.S. Customs and Border Protection tarriff classifications, and proposed US regulations which could affect trade. To find out more, click here to go to Mr. Trumbull's Agathon Associates website. Posted March 18, 2015

Inflatable Living Compartments Being Delived to International Space Station. Great article on the Science Recorder website about what will be the newest addition to the International Space Station (ISS). It's an inflatable spacecraft that the astronauts will attach and use as expanded living space and test facility. The unit is made by Bigelow Aerospace of Las Vegas, Nev., USA, and measures 13 by 10 feet. The fabric's exact composition is proprietary but what's been said are the walls are made with multiple layers of woven Kevlar on the outside, then layers of the glass fiber called Newtex (used for thermal insulation) and then Nomex on the inside of the shell. There may also be layers of a relatively new manufactured fiber call Vectran, a liquid crystal polymer which will give the shell thermal stability. The capsule will be shipped to the ISS on September 2. Click here to read the article. Posted March 15, 2015

US Army Researching Uniforms that Automatically Decontaminate. The US Army website has an interesting article posted on the work being done at the Aberdeen Proving Ground in Md., USA, developing "uniforms and chemical protective suits that decontaminate themselves and are cool enough to wear for extend periods in hot climates."  The team is led by the Natick Soldier Systems Center. The project is focused on a new product called UIPE -- Uniform Integrated Protective Ensemble. UIPE 1 is already undergoing field testing and is replacing JSLIST  -- Joint Service Lightweight Integrated Suit Technology. The next generation is UIPE 2, a thinner and more mobile suit. Click here to read the article. Posted March 14, 2015

Texprocess Americas 2014 is Recognized by Trade Show Executive Magazine. Those of us in attendance at the 2014 Texprocess knew it was a terrific show last May in Atlanta, Ga., USA. Now it is being recognized for an overall increase in total attendance by Trade Show Executive magazine's Fastest 50 Class of 2014. Texprocess Americas 2014 saw an increase in total attendace from 2,464 in 2012 to 2,975 in 2014. It was part of the co-located mega-event along with Techtextil North America 2014 and 2014 JEC Americas (but attendance figures for the three were kept separate). Congratulations to the entire management team. The next Texprocess Americas will be held again in Atlanta, May 3-5, 2016. Posted March 2015

Picanol Group Reports Decline in Turnover in 2014. It's difficult to match a record-setting year. The Picanol Group, a leading manufacturer of technical textiles machinery, released its Annual Report for 2014. The report shows a decline in consolidated turnover from €559.9 million in 2013 to €418.2 million in 2014. However, it is important to remember that 2013 was the best year in the company's history. For the first half of 2015, Picanol expects to realize an increase in turnover over the first half of 2014. The company anticipates that the global market for weaving machines in 2015 will remain at approximately the same level as 2014. Reading into that statement, it appears Picanol intends to enlarge its share of the global machinery market. Click here to view their Annual Report. Posted March 12, 2015

Fabric Architect Frei Otto Dies. One of the world's formost proponent in the design of fabric structures, Frei Otto, died at age 89, on March 9. Ironically, Mr. Otto received his final recognition the next day when he was named the 40th winner of the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize. There is an excellent story about his accomplishments in The Economist. Click here to read. Posted March 11, 2015

New Nonwovens Conference to be Organized in China. INDA, the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, has announced it has joined with China Nonwovens & Industrial Textiles Association (CNITA) to co-organize a new nonwovens event in Asia -- the China International Nonwovens Expo & Forum (CINE). The event will be held October 14-16, 2015 in Shanghai, China. Other co-organizers of the event are China Council for the Promotion of International Trade's Sub-Council of Textile Industry (CCPIT-TEX) and Messe Frankfurt. Very interesting and powerful co-organizers. Click here to read the entire INDA press release. Posted March 11, 2015

Destroyed Airship Prompts Lawsuit Against the US Navy. Who would have thought we'd have two postings this week on separate airship stories? This time Aeroscraft Aeronautical Systems, a commercial airship manufacturer based in Montebello, Calif., USA, has filed a $65 million lawsuit against the US Navy after its experimental helium-filled dirigible was destroyed when a part of the roof of the Navy hangar where it was being stored collapsed in October 2013. Click here to read more on the Fox website about the lawsuit. Posted March 11, 2015  

Smart Textiles "Lightening the Load for Soldiers." There's a very interesting, informative article on the website CNET which reviewed military applications of smart textiles, including fabric keyboards and wearable gear. The article focuses on the technical textile product developments by Intelligent Textiles Ltd., a British firm. Weight reduction and more flexibility were the key product development drivers. Worth the read for those thinking about the next new application for their material. Click here to read the article. Posted March 11, 2015

National Council of Textile Organizations to Meet in Washington. The National Council of Textile Organizations 2015 Annual Conference has the theme "The 21st Century U.S. Textile Industry: Capitalizing on the Resurgence." The conference is taking place March 25-26, 2015 in Washington, D.C., USA. This year the conference looks at the current state of the US textile industry, exploring recent "re-shoring" trends and initiatives, and considering a changing polical landscape which includes the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. Click here to go to NCTO's website. Posted March 11, 2015

JEC Announces Event Name Change. At the start of the JEC Europe Composites Show & Conference 2015 in Paris yesterday, the show organizer JEC Group announced the event's name is changing in 2016 to JEC World. The 2015 JEC World is also moving to the Paris Nord Villepinte fairgrounds in order to meet increased exhibit space demands. The event will take place March 8-10, 2016. Posted March 11, 2015

Photo: BBC

Giant Airship Almost Ready. There's a very nice article posted on the CNN website today about the new giant airship called the Airlander10. The airship was originally manufacturered by the British design company Hybrid Air Vehicles (HAV) for the US military but fell victim to budget cuts. The airship, using helium, is 300-feet long, has a skin made of carbon fiber, Kevlar and Mylar. and can haul 10 tons. It should be ready for operation by the end of 2015. No word on how the ship will used but it could be both commercial and military applications. Click here to view the article. Posted March 10, 2015

Swiss Sent "Stealth" Textiles to Russia. The swissinf.ch website is reporting "A Swiss shipment of high-tech stealth textiles to Russia was greenlighted after sanctions had already been put in place on military equipment to Russia and Ukraine." The shipment's value was $91.4 million and reportedly had been approved because the order was already finalized befoe the sanctions were announced. The "stealth" textiles were materials made which were designed to evade infrared and radar detection. The article doesn't tell the type of fabric or who manufactured it. Click here to read. Posted March 9, 2015 

January US Export Figures for Specialty and Industrial Fabrics Released. The US Office of Textiles & Apparel (OTEXA) has released the January export figures for the Specialty and Industrial Fabrics group. Comparing 2014 and 2015 12-month periods ending January 31, total US exports increased by $259.8 million or 6.7%. Mexico, the largest destination of exports, was up almost 12% during the 12-month comparison period. Mexico, however, did see a decline in January 2015 over the previous January 2014. Exports to China, the 3rd largest export destination, was also off in January by almost 5%. Click here to go to the OTEXA webpage to view export figures. Posted March 9, 2015

Body Armor Company Wins Subcontract on US Department of Homeland Security Contract. Protect the Force, Inc., a subsidiary of Mission Ready Services Inc., has been awarded a 14-month $97,500 subcontract through prime contractor North Carolina State University's Textile Protection and Comfort Center to develop an Advanced Mulitpurpose Base ensemble for Emergency Responders. The contract includes identification of materials as they relate to functional design, prototyping, end-user functionality requirements, etc.  Click here to read the company press release. Posted March 9, 2015

3D Knitting Helps in Making Prosthetics and Other Advanced Products. Don't you just love to read about how consumers are becoming more aware of the advances in our industry? The website The Guardian has a short interesting article on the relatively recent technological changes in knitting, an 8,000 year-old method of forming material. The first major change in the mass production of apparel in the 1950s and digital interface starting in the 1970s. One example of new technology is the knitting for carbon fibers into fabrics that are then impregnated with resin and products such as prosthetics that are light, strong and stiff with electronics embedded into the weave. Click here to read the article. Posted March 9, 2015

Dangerous Awnings Putting Lives at Risk in New Zealand. ...or at least that's what the headline shouted today on the Dominion-Post (Wellington, N.Z.) website.  The article then opens with "Wellington has hundreds of defective, potentially-dangerous awnings, and the council is seeking new powers to force owners to fix them." The flap is all about urban development, violations of building codes and the potential of damage from another devastating earthquake. The article fails to mention, though, the type of material used for the awnings they found defective. It seems to us (BeaverLake6 Report) that if they haven't already, the Outdoor Fabrics Association of New Zealand (OFPANZ) should get ahead of the damaging story and work with the Wellington city government. Make a postive out of a negative. Click here to read the newspaper website article. Posted March 9, 2015

Inflatable Dams in the Works for Arkansas River Project. Once again technical textiles are finding to be an attractive alternative material to solve a problem. The Tulsa World (Tulsa, Okla., USA) website has an article today reporting several low-water dams are being rebuilt on the Arkansas River passing through Tulsa. The fix proposed is to use inflatable bladder systems to replace the previous hydraulic lift systems that have failed several times at different dams in the region over the past few years. The design is called an "Obermeyer Gate," a gate that rises vertically when a large coated fabric bladder at its base is inflated and helps forms a wall to reduce the flow of water. Besides the lesser economic costs, the deflation of the bladders allows more water to be released to avoid flooding during the specific times of the year. Click here to read more. Posted March 9, 2015

Oerlikon Board of Director Changes. The Chairman of the Board of Directors OC Oerlikon Corporation AG, Tim Summers, has informed the Board that he will not stand for re-election at the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders being held April 8th. Two other current Board Directors, Carl Stadelhofer and Kurt Hausheer, will also not stand for re-election.  Dr. Michael Süss is being proposed to the Shareholders as the new Chairman of the Board of Directors. Dr. Süss has been a Member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG and CEO of the Siemens Energy Sector. Oerlikon, headquartered in Switzerland, is a manufacturing of textile production equipment. click here to read the company press release. Posted March 8, 2015 

Coal Ash Disposal Becomes a Big Business For Geosynthetics. The key North America market drivers for the geosynthetics industry are the US Environmental Protection Agency's regulations. The most influencing regulation for the geosynthetics market just may be the one taking effect in May 2015 requiring the building of 700 coal ash containment facilities. Business journalist Lee Buchsbaum has an article posted on the geosynthetica.net website that is worth a read if you're interested or affected by this market. Click here to read the article. Posted March 6, 2015

Photo Credit: ECN.com

New National Standard for Face Masks to Take Effect. Millions of Chinese citizens routinely wear protective face masks in cities like Beijing because of the oppressive smog. Currently, there is no minimum national standard for the masks. China Business News is reporting the Shanghai Bureau of Quality and Technical Supervision tested 69 random samples and over 80% of the products failed to meet requirements for protection against PM2.5, including well-know brands like 3m and BlueShields. PM2.5 refers to filtering out particles as small as 25 micrometers. The China Nonwovens and Industrial Textiles Association and several other government organizations and test centers are now charged with drafting technical regulations for the daily use face mask industry. Click here to read the article posted on China's ECNS.cn website. Posted March 6, 2015

Frank Wright

Industry Veteran Retires. After 44 years with the DOT brand of fasteners, first at TRW and later at Scovill Fasteners, BeaverLake6 Report has received word our good friend Frank Wright has retired. His last day as an employee of Scovill (Boston, Mass., USA) was February 27. However, we're very happy to confirm Mr. Wright will be staying in the industry as a consultant to Scovill. Mr. Wright is one of those individuals that will make you enjoy being part of this market. We wish him only the best in his new position. Posted March 6, 2015

World's Toughest Shoelaces? Yes, we now know who makes the world's toughest shoelace. According to the BusinessKorea website, Kolon Sport has been certifed to have the world's toughest shoelace by the Guinness World Records. The shoelace is called the Heraclace. At its Korea Record Institute certification testing, the shoelace, made of Heracron fiber developed by Kolon Industries, Seoul, Korea, lifted 710 kilograms. Click here to read the complete article. Posted March 6, 2015

Latest ITMA Brochure Available. November seems like a long time away but people traveling to ITMA 2015 in Milan, Italy need to start planning now. Choice hotels fill up fast for a show this big. The show organizer has just published a new brochure that includes show and conference registration and Milan area information. Click here to view it. Posted March 6, 2015

T. Federle and D. Rousse

Thomas Federle Honored by INDA. INDA, the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, recongized Thomas W. Federle, Ph.D., Research Fellow at Procter & Gamble, with its prestigious 2015 Lifetime Technical Achievement Award. INDA President David Rousse presented the award at the association's Annual Meeting & Leadership Conference, February 23-25, in Hilton Head, S.C., USA. Click here to read the entire press release. Posted March 6, 2015

US Customs Seizes Backpacks, Lunch Bags. In two separate incidents, US Customs and Border Protection announced on their website CBP officers at the Houston Seaport (Houston, Texas, USA) seized more than 6000 children's backpacks and lunch bags after testing confirmed unacceptable levels of lead. The backpacks and lunch bags orginated in China and were destined for the American marketplace. Read more about the seizures on the CBP website by clicking here. Posted March 6, 2015

5% Tax on Technical Textiles in India.  According to Business Standard websiite, India's Gujarat state government's finance minister Saurabh Patel has announced that the government will impose a 5% Value Added Tax (VAT) on technical textiles. The tax is expected to raise about $800 million [which means if our calculations are correct the total consumption value of technical textiles in Gujaret is $16 billion]. Fabrics for garments and domestic use will remain exempt from tax in the state. Click here to read the article. Posted March 4, 2015

TenCate Records 4% Organic Revenue Growth in 2014. Royal TenCate Corporation recorded a nice increase in 2014, according to a press release issued by the company a few days ago. The good news was found particularly in the 2nd half of the year. Organic growth in the last 6 months of 2014 was 9%. One of the reasons for the increase was the demand for the company's TenCate Defender M materials for the military. Click here for the entire TenCate press release. Posted March 4, 2015

Update: Regarding New US Law Banning Foreign-Made Flags for DoD. Our thanks to David Trumbull of Agathon Associates for clarifying the post we put up yesterday regarding our surprise the Berry Amendment didn't already apply to the purchase of US flags for the DoD. The Berry Amendment does apply to flags but only if DoD buys more than $150,000 worth in a single order, something which very rarely happens. So, this new law is more symbolic with little practical significance. Posted March 4, 2015

Foreign-Made American Flags Banned by US Military. Now here is something that surprises us. We always thought American flags made for the US military were required to be made in the US under the Berry Amendment. Apparently this hasn't been the case. Under a new law signed as part of the 2014 US government's omnibus appropriations bill requires any flag purchased by the US Defense Department to be 100% made in America. However, another bill that called for all American flags flown on government facilities be American made failed to pass. Click here to read the article posted on military.com website about the issue. Posted March 3, 2015

Nonwovens Association Launches a Statistics App to Follow Market Trends. Here's a great new program offered by a trade association: EDANA, the global association for nonwovens and related industries, has launched a statistical app which provides updates on the main trends in the nonwovens industry. Indicators in the feedstock, raw materials and end-use markets are analysed within the macreconomic context. The program is available on both the Android and Apple platforms. Click here for more information. Posted March 3, 2015

Jansani to Receive AATCC's 2015 Chapin Award for Service to the Industry. An important value of an industry trade association or professional society is to recognize those who are making a difference, who are selfless in their contribution to better the industry. In recognition of his outstanding service to AATCC, the organization has named Kantilal (Kanti) A. Jasani as the 2015 recipient of the Harold C. Chapin Award. The Award is presented annually to a senior member with at least 20 years of continuous membership in AATCC, and who has contributed outstanding service, enabling the Association to attain the objectives for which it was founded. Click here to visit the AATCC website to find out more about Mr. Jasani's contribution. Posted March 2, 2015

Photo Credit: Doug Walker/Rome News-Tribune

Have You Seen These Blue Awnings? Honestly, what is the world coming to be? Someone stole a set of awnings right off the front of Schroeder's New Deli in Rome, Ga., USA. It was done in broad daylight on a Saturday morning. According to an article posted on the Rome News-Tribune website, two men came into the store and told the manager they were there to take down the blue ones and replace them next week with black ones. They were not telling the truth. Click here to read the full story. Posted March 2, 2015 

Sioen Reports on FY2014. Sioen Industries NV, an international technical textiles manufacturer headquartered in The Netherlands, has released its preliminary financial report for 2014. Sioen is reporting a €16.5 million gross profit in 2014, an increase of 15% over the previous year. EBIT was €27.8 million compared to €23.8 million in 2013. The complete financial annual report will be released March 24. Click here to view the Sioen's financial report released today. Posted February 27, 2015

2015 Tent Expo Attracts Rental Tent Operators. The Tent Rental Division (TRD) of Industrial Fabrics Association International (Roseville, Minn., USA) met January 29-31 in Orlando, Fla., USA for its annual gathering. The event attracted almost 600 rental tent installers, tent fabricators, and tent material and equipment suppliers. The show had 58 exhibitors and featured 21 tent displays. Congratulations to Tom Markel of Bravo Events Expos Displays and Brian Richardson of L&A Tent Rentals Inc. Each received the Outstanding Volunteer Award for their work on the TRD steering committee. Click here to read an article in IFAI's InTents magazine, summarizing the event. Posted February 27, 2015

Student Wins Geosynthetic Society Paper Awards. The North American Geosynthetics Society's (NAGS) 2015 Student Paper Award was presented to Daniel Jones, an engineering student at Queen's University (Kingston, Ont., Canada) at Geosynthetics 2015 in Portland, Ore., USA. The paper was titled "Hydration of Geosynthetic Clay Liners in Antarctica." Mr. Jones was presented with a USD $500 award and will receive an invitation to present his winning paper in a special session at GeoAmericas 2016, the 3rd Pan-American Conference on Geoosynthetics, taking place April 10-13, 2016 in Miami, Fla., USA. Click here to read more about Mr. Jones' accomplishment on the geosynthetica.net website. Posted February 25, 2015

Astronaut will Present Keynote Address at Upcoming North American Composites Show. JEC, the international organization for the composites industry, has announced former NASA astronaut and motivational speaker Ron Garan will be the featured speaker at JEC Americas 2015 in Houston, Texas, USA. JEC Americas is co-locating for the second year with Techtextil North America. Since Houston is the home of NASA, the location brings a special opportunity to showcase how composites are used in many applications for space exploration. Click here to go to the JEC Americas 2015 website for more information. Posted February 25, 2015   

New Video Available on Importance of EMS Workers to Wear HIgh Visibility Safety Apparel. Emergency medical services (EMS) personnel often find themselves in dangerous situations when working on highways and fast moving traffic. In the US, there is a federal regulation that went into effect in 2008 which mandates anyone working in the right-of-way of a federal-aided highway has to wear high-visibility clothing that meets the requirements of the American National Standards Institute. While high-visibility apparel is required for EMS workers in Europe and Australia, many US responders prefer darker clothes and then don high visibility vests, seeing the safety vest as an accessory, To encourage more awareness, a new video has been produced to remind workers about safety vests entitled "High Visibility Safety Vests: Be Safe--Be Seen." The video shows the dramatic visibility difference of the EMS worker wearing a vest and without wearing the vest. Click here to read a post on the Journal of Emergency Medical Services website about the video. Posted February 25, 2015

US Defense Logistics Agency Exercises Option in Tactical Vest Contract. Protective Products Enterprises Inc., Sunrise, Fla., USA has been awarded a maximum $78,996,385 modification exercising the third one-year option period of a one-year base contract  with three one-year option periods for improved outer tactical vest and components.  Location of performance is Florida, with a Feb. 27, 2016 performance completion date. Using military services are Army, Air Force and Marine Corps. Type of appropriation is fiscal year 2015 defense working capital funds. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, Philadelphia, Penn., USA. Posted February 24, 2015

Photo provided by J. Stull

Scrutiny Required in Understanding PPE Certification Labels Claims. There's an interesting article published on the Fire Chief website discussing the potential in mislabeled PPE equipment such as firefighter turncoats. The article, written by Jeffrey and Grace Stull, is a very good examination of what certification labels mean, including the awareness a purchaser should have of "puffed up" and fraudulent claims by some manufacturers and even the making up of certifications and certification organizations. Click here to read the article. Posted February 24, 2015

Japanese Juice Company Creates a Backpack That Feeds Tomatoes to Runners. Yes, we found the definitive article on tomato dispensing backpacks today. According to the website The Mary Sue, the vegetable juice company Kogome has unveiled a wearable tomato backpack contraption called the Tomatan that can be filled with six mid-sized tomatoes. The maker felt this should be enough power for runners seeking energy from tomatoes in the Tokyo Marathon which took place last weekend. The backpack looks like a tomato doll and sits on the wearer's shoulders. A lever in the foot (see the photo) moves the arms to catch a tomato from a dispensing shoot and then places it in front of the runner's mouth. No word on how the runner(s) did using this backpack technology. Click here to read the article. Posted February 24, 2015

Combined Geosynthetic Events Attract Large Participation. A press release issued today by the Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) reports the February 15-18 co-located Geosynthetics 2015 / IECA Environmental Connection attracted a combined 2,700 participants (conference delegates, trade show visitors and exhibit personnel) and 240 exhibits. The events were held in Portland, Ore., USA. Geosynthetics 2015 was organized by IFAI and Environmental Connections was organized by International Erosion Control Association. The next IFAI geosynthetics conference will co-organized with the ASCE's Geo-Institute GeoCongress and called Geotechnical Frontiers 2017. It will be held March 12-15, 2017, in Orlando, Fla., USA. Posted February 24, 2015

AATCC Honors Zeronian with the Olney Award. Congratulations to S. Haig Zeronian for being selected yesterday to receive The Olney Medal, the highest awaard presented by AATCC. Mr. Zeronian was recognized for his outstanding lifetime achievement in a field of major importance to textile science, including contributing to the understanding of the relationship of fiber structure The award will be presented March 26 during AATCC's International Conference in Savannah, Ga., USA. Posted February 24, 2015

Advanced Textiles Show Issues Call for Papers. A "Call for Papers" has been issued for Advanced Textiles 2015 Expo, one of three events occuring under the IFAI Expo 2015 banner, October 6-9, 2015. Advanced Textiles will be held in Anaheim, Calif., USA. Submissions are due by March 16, 2015. Click here to go to the Advanced Textiles website. Posted February 22, 2015

Takata Fined $14,000 Per Day for Uncooperative Behavior. Time for our weekly update about the Takata airbag recall fiasco. Apparently the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is not happy with the passive aggressive response Takata took when the NHTSA requested company documents relating to the company's internal investigation of potential problems with the airbag inflators. Takata response was to give NHTSA 2.4 million pages of documents without explaining anything about them. NHTSA, not satisfied, called the massive dump of documents a "waste of time," and is now fining Takata $14,000 per day until it feels there is actual cooperation from the company. Click here to read an article about the document dump. Posted February 22, 2015

(L-R) Pierre Wirtz, Diana Heelis and Patricia Featherstone

EDANA Presents Lifetime Achievement Award. EDANA, the international nonwovens trade association based in Brussels, announced at its recent Board of Governors meeting that it has awarded Diana Heelis, Public Affairs consultant representing Kimberly Clark, its Lifetime Achievement Award. the award was given in recognition of her dedication to the industry and contributions to the Association's activities for more than 20 years. Click here to read the release. Posted February 21, 2015

Shark Tanks" Television Show to Feature Backpack Manufacturers. The popular US television show "Shark Tank" will tonight feature two people who founded Taaluma Totes. According to an article on the Roanoke Times website (Roanoke, Va., USA), "Taaluma Totes sells colorful backpacks made from tradtional fabrics of developing countries. Twenty-five percent of the $65 paid for each backpack is turned into a microloan that is given to some farmers and small business owners in whichever country where the item's fabric comes from." Click here to read the article. [Note: This is the type of project that we could see funded by the Industrial Fabrics Foundation, a nonprofit foundation managed by the Industrial Fabrics Association International] Posted February 20, 2015 

Israeli Nonwovens Company Announces US Plant Expansion. The North Carolina governor's office issued a press release today announcing Shalag US, the North American division of the Israel-based textile company Shalag Nonwovens, will be investing $16 million in its Oxford, N.C. plant. The company manufactures calender-bonded and other types of nonwoven materials used in the hygiene marketplace. This is the company’s second major expansion at the plant since it opened in 2009. Today's announcement also noted the company has been awarded a grant from the One North Carolina fund worth up to $100,000 if the company meets its jobs and investments goals. Click here to read an article about this expansion in the Triangle Business Journal (Raleigh, N.C. USA). Posted February 20, 2015 

Geomembrane Quality Installation Guide Available. The Complete Field Guide to Ensuring Quality Geosynthetics Installs has recently been published. The 372-page guide's subhead is "Volume 1: Fundamentals & Geomembranes" indicating there are more volumes to come on different segments of the geosynthetic applications. The author is Glen Toepfer, C.E.T., president of CQA Solutions LTD. Click here for more information posted on the geosynthetica.net website. Posted February 19, 2015

Shade Cloth Protection Factor Claims Under Scrutiny in Australia. According to an article posted on the website of The Advertiser (Adelaide, South Australia, Australia) some shade cloths promoted as an extreme sun defense are failing to provide the minimum acceptable protection against skin cancer. The Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency requires a Protection Factor of 35 or high to adequately provide a shield against UV rays. Most of the shade cloth being offered has a Protection Factor of 10 or 15. The problem may lie in the confusion over the intended use of the fabric. The Protection Factor was originally designed as a regulation for agricultural shade cloth not as relevant to humans as a UV blocking rating. Click here to read more. Posted February 19, 2015

Premier Technical Textiles Event in Canada Takes Place Next Month. One of those "hidden" quality events for the technical textiles industry is the upcoming Expo Hightex 2015. Organized by the CTT Group in Montreal, Expo Hightex 2015 will take place March 25-26 in Boucherville, Quebec. This year the conference part of Hightex has 4 sections -- Protect, Meditex, Transportech and Workwear. More than 600 delegates, 36 exhibitos and 20 guest speakers will be participating. Click here for more information. Posted February 17, 2015

Airbag Rollers Haul Out 3600 Ton Ro-Ro Ship. We found another interesting article on the use of industrial airbags to bring a vessel out of the water. In this case it was a good size Ro-Ro (roll on, roll off) cargo ship. The 140 meter long ship was taken out of the water and set on the beach for repairs in Abu Dhabi. Fourteen airbags were used to roll the ship on to the beach. Click here to read the article. Posted February 16, 2015

European Rear Seat Automotive Airbags Will Debut in 2016. According to Automotive News website, TRW Automotive Holdings Corp., a major supplier of automotive safety systems including airbags and seatbelts, is preparing to introduce in 2016 two airbags designed to protective rear seat passengers. One is mounted in the roof and the other is in the back of the front seat. Click here to read the article. Posted February 16, 2015 

Defense Ministry Offers Bulletproof Vest to Russian Army Whistleblowers. Well, this was an interesting article we came across today posted on The Moscow Times website. The Russian Defense Ministry is offering the chance for citizens to win a Skoll bulletproof vest and other protective gear by writing a report on wrongdoings in the country's military. The contest organizer -- which is the government -- says it would protect the confidentiality of contenders who wish to remain anonymous. Click here to read the article. Posted February 13, 2015

NCTO Applauds USTR for Confronting China on Alleged Illegal Export Subsidies. The National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO), a US-based trade group in Washington, has issued a press release supporting the U.S. Trade Representative Ambassador Michael Froman's decision to pursue dispute settlement consultations with the Government of China at the World Trade Organization (WTO) concerning China's "Demonstration Bases-Common Service Platform" export subsidy program. NCTO's long-standing position is that China's rise in the global textile and apparel market has been substantially aided by illegal and unfair trading practices. Click here to read the NCTO press release. Posted February 13, 2015

India Military Innovations Using Technical Textiles on Display. The Times of India has a short informative article on their website about the contributions coming from India's Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO). The products developed by DRDO include protective suits for nuclear, biological and chemical warfare. The products were on display February 5-9 at the Bhartiya Vigyan Expo 2015, in Campal, Panaji, India. Click here to read the article. Posted February 13, 2015

Automotive Recyclers Association Files Lawsuit Agains Takata on Defective Airbags. The Automotive Recyclers Association (ARA), a US-based trade association, has filed a class action lawsuit against Takata Corporation, its subsidiaries TK Holdings Inc. and Highland Industries, as well as numerous automotive manufacturers relating to the defective airbags recall. The claim is that ARA members -- automotive recyclers -- are not able to sell or trade recycled airbags because they are now valueless. [Personally, we're not sure we're any more comfortable having the knowledge that we may have a recycled airbag in our car.] Click here to read the press release issued by Automotive Recyclers Association. Posted February 12, 2015

Potential 20,000 Jobs in UK Textile Manufacturing. Encouraging news for the UK's textile industry was in a report issued by the Manchester-based Alliance Project. According to an article posted on the website of the Manchester Evening News, up to 20,000 jobs could be created by 2020 in specific parts of the textile industry. Two segments highlighted in the report were the development of technical textiles and composites manufacturing industries. The report is said to be the biggest study on supply and demand in the textile industry in 20 years. Click here to read the article. Posted February 12, 2015

Proposed Law Would Make Counterfeit Airbags Illegal. Now you would think this law is already in place. Maybe so elsewhere but apparently not in the US State of Iowa. According to today's The Des Moines Register, Des Moines, Iowa, USA, there is a bill before the state legislature that would make the act of installing or selling counterfeit airbags illegal. One of the lawmakers quoted in the article says "They've got false logos on them. And sometimes they're filled with things other than [what] they should be, and they don't work at all." Click here to read the article (but be aware you have to answer a survey question on the website). Posted February 11, 2015

"How This Tiny Startup Plans To Dethrone Gore-Tex." Can it be done? Well, we don't know but that's the title of an interesting article found on the Australian website Gizmodo. The article describes a new production process -- Core Construction -- that allows Colorado-based Voormi to weave a technical membrane straight into the fabric of a one-layer item of clothing. Click here to read the article. Posted February 11, 2015

Photo Source: Dainese

Skiers Reluctant to Use Airbags in Competitions. The addition of even the slight weight and bulk has made caused many skiers to be reluctant in embracing the use of ski airbags. The IFA, the international ski federation which governs the large competitions, is also hesitant about making the airbags mandatory despite their potential protective advantages for the racer. It's an interesting article posted through the New York Times News Service that reveals the same old reluctance of trying to introduce acceptance of new technology. Click here to read the article. Posted February 10, 2015

New York City to Spend Millions on New Bulletproof Vests. City officials announced they are adding into this year's budget $7.3 million for new bulletproof vests for their police force, plus budgeting $4.2 million for vest purchases in 2016.  The 2015 purchases will fund 13,000 vests. The funding will allow replacement of older vests. Currently, 6,400 current vest are more than 10 years old and another 15,500 vests are more than five years old. Click here to read a New York Post article about the planned purchases. Posted February 10, 2015 

Interview Reveals More about the Lab Developing India's Space Recovery Systems. The Times of India website has an interesting interview with S.C. Sati, the director of the lab at India's Aerial Delivery Research and Development Establishment (ADRDE). ADRDE makes nearly 60 varieties of parachutes. Besides supplying the nation's space craft recovery systems, parachutes developed by ADRDE are used by all three branches of India's armed forces. Click here to read more on the Times of India website. Posted February 9, 2015

New Recommendations Out for Police Body Armor. The US Department of Justice (DOJ) has issued new federal guidelines aimed to address the comfortability of bullet-proof vests worn by members of law enforcement. The thinking is that many of the current vests manufactureed are uncomfortable and are not being worn. According to the website The Hill, the DOJ also noted "it is in the process of developing new guidelines for stab-resistant armor, which would be better suited for correction officers in prisons than bullet-proof vests." You can read or download the new 104 page federal guidelines by clicking here. Click here to read The Hill. Posted February 9, 2015

AATCC Foundation Offers New Scholarship. If your company is an AATCC Corporate member and you have a child looking soon at attending a university, it might not be a bad idea to look at a new scholarship that has become available. The AATCC Foundation is offering a $2000 scholarship that will be awarded annually to one high school senior, who plans to major in a textile-related university program. Click here to find more information ablut requirements and to obtain an application. Posted February 9, 2015

HDT Global Acquires Purchase of DHS Technologies' Operations. The consolidation of US military shelter manufacturerss continue to consolidate as a result of severe military budget cutbacks. Today, HDT Global, a shelter supplier headquartered in Solon, Ohio, USA, announced the acquisition of the business and assets of DHS Technologies, LLC from Kanders & Company, a private investment firm. DHS, headquartered in Orangeburg,N.Y., USA,, is the manufacturer of the military's Deployable Rapid Assembly Shelter (DRASH). Click here to read the press release issued by HDT. Posted February 5, 2015

Takata Warns of Big Loss on Recalls. It seems things just keep getting worse with the ongoing Takata airbag fiasco. A number of financial news organizations are reporting today that the Japanese airbag manufacturer Takata has warned of a "facing a bigger-than-expected" financial loss as a result of the recalls. The number is staggering: Takata said it was expecting to lose $265 million in the fiscal year ending in March. Click here to read an article about the loss that is posted on the Industry News website. Posted February 5, 2015

Turkish Nonwoven 2015 Symposium Date Set. EDANA, the nonwovens industry trade association based in Brussels, Belgium, has announced the Turkish Nonwovens Symposium will be held in Istanbul on November 10-11, 2015. EDANA is currently seeking presentations and will also offer table top exhibit opportunities for industry suppliers. Click here to read the press release. Posted February 3, 2015

IFAI Japan Delegation to Attend Taiwan Technical Textile Conference. The Taiwan Technical Textiles Association reports that a 7-person delegation from IFAI Japan will be attending the 2015 9th TTTA International Technical Textiles Symposium. The symposium is taking place in Taipai Hsien, Taiwan, March 25-26, 2015. The IFAI Japan delegation will be led by Chair Junko Takai of Hivix Co. Ltd., Mizuho, Japan and, in addition to representatives from a number of other companies, will include the organization's Executive Director Kiko Tagawa. This is the first time the Japanese group has organized a delegation to attend the Tawan annual conference. Posted February 2, 2015

Highland Industries Set to Expand in US. The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, N.C., USA) is reporting today that high-performance textile manufacturer Highland Industries has received an economic development grant from the city of Statesville, N.C. to expand its business in the city's industrial park. This city grant is part of a larger incentive funding previously approved by the North Carolina Department of Commerce. Click here to read the article posted in the Observer. Posted Janaury 31, 2015

Sunbrella Pioneer Allen Swers Passes. Long-time textile industry veteran Allen Swers died this past week at 93. Mr. Swers was in the furniture industry when in 1982 he approached the sales manager of Glen Raven Custom Fabrics, the manufacturer of the outdoor fabric Sunbrella. In an article posted January 29 on the Casual Living website, Allen E. Gant, Jr., chairman and CEO of Glen Raven, Inc., reflecting on the passing of Mr. Swers, said "It was his vision that led Glen Raven to create the Sunbrella furniture fabric business..." Mr. Swers son, David Swers, is now the president of Glen Raven Custom Fabrics. Click here to go to the Casual Living article. Posted January 30, 2015

Raneri

HLC Industries Names Raneri as Vice President. HLC Industries, Inc., a converter and supplier of military and commercial fabrics, has announced the appointment of Peter Raneri as Vice President of Sales and Business Development. Mr. Raneri has nearly three decades of diverse textile industry experience and was most recently with Brand & Oppenheimer. Posted January 30, 2015

IFAI Graphics Event Cancelled. We received late word the IFAI Fabric Graphics Day conference scheduled for January 29, 2015 has been cancelled. The notice was posted on the IFAI website. The conference was being organized by the Fabric Graphics Association, a division of the Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI), at the Glen Raven Sunbrella manufacturing plant in Anderson, S.C., USA. Posted January 28, 2015

Final Program for Outlook Plus Latin America 2015 is Announced. The first nonwoven event organized in South America by the two global nonwoven trade associations -- EDANA and INDA -- is now set with the program established. Outlook Plus Latin America 2015 will take place March 3-5, 2015 in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The first two days, will examine market, product and technology intelligence for hygiene and personal care. The third day will feature a unique focus on durable nonwoven applications and future opportunities. The keynote presentation will be delivered by Roberto Macedo, Ph.D..  His presentation will be  on global and regional economic prospects for the Mercosul Region (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela). Click here to read the press release issued by the two organizations. Posted January 28, 2015

Geosynthetics Video on Sustainability Released. The International Geosynthetics Society (IGS) has produced a video called "Geosynthetics for Sustainable Development." As the title implies, the video shows the many applications of geosynthetics which go towards protecting the earth and its limited resources. I would recommend viewing it for those wanting a 5-minute overview of geosynthetics applications. Click here to view the video. Posted January 28, 2015

Canadian Military Seeks New Protective Suits. According to an article posted on the Ottawa Citizen website, the Canadian Department of National Defence "wants a contractor to design and develop a hybrid protective suit that would shield wearers against chemical or biological hazards while allowing them to effectivel engage an enemy." The DND is allocating $700,000 for the development of the suit. It would be an all-hazard protective suit system. The RFP  notes the construction of the prototype must be done by June 2016. Click here to read the article. Posted January 27, 2015

US Military Tent Maker Thrives Despite Defense Cutbacks. There's a nice article posted on The Dispatch (Columbus, Miss. USA) website about the success of two brothers, Iraqi war veterans, and their father in establishing a startup tent manufacturing company. LiteFighter makes one- and two-man tents, and currently markets them exclusively for the military. LiteFighters teamed up with American Power Sources, a military apparel company which had fallen on hard times because of the US military budget cutback. Now they are making 3,000 LiteFighter tents per month. Click here to read the article. Posted January 27, 2015

US Military Textile Supplier Appoints New Management Team. Brand & Oppenheimer Co., Inc., a US textile converter and supplier to the US military, has been given a new management team by controlling shareholder Praesidian Capital. Edward Ricci has been appointed CEO. Ben Galben and Bryan Boulis, have also been appointed to the Office of the CEO, although their positions within Brand & Oppenheimer are not noted in the company press release. Mr. Ricci and Mr. Galpen were founders of 1947 LLC, a company which owns the exclusive international distributor rights to MultiCam®, a licensed camouflage pattern used by the US Army. Prasidian also owns US textiles supplier Performance Textiles, so this appears to be a good fit for all parties involved. Click here to read the company press release. Posted January 27, 2015

Honda is Dropping Takata as Airbag Supplier for New Accord. It was bound to happen with the problems involving the massive recall of vehicles with potentially defective Takata airbag systems. Several websites are reporting today that Honda will be switching its supplier of airbags from Takata to Toyoda Gosei for the next Honda Accord model intended for the North American market. Click here to read an article posted on the Financial Times website. Posted January 25, 2015

Indian and US Officials Meet on Technical Textiles Issues During President Obama's Trip. According to the Indian website livemint.com, Nirmala Sitharaman India's Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, is meeting US Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker this week during US President Barack Obama's visit and one of the issues being discussed is making US technology in manufacturing technical textiles more available to India. Technical textiles is called a "sunrise" industry in India. Click here to read the article. Posted January 25, 2015

Amazing Mountain Parachute Skiing Video. We came across a post on the web blog reelifewithjane.com that talked about a sports documentary that premiered on January 21 called "The Unrideables: Alaska Range." Simply put, as the article's author Lisa Ianucci says: "It's breathtaking." The documentary features the exploits of Jan DeVore's touch-and-go skiing down Alaskan mountain peaks using a parachute to jump from cliff to cliff. It's inspiring to know how our industry's products are used in such challenging situations. Click here to see the video. Posted January 25, 2015

Takata Executive Indicted in US for Price Fixing. According to a post today on the website channelnewsasia.com, there's more bad press for Takata, the Japanese manufacturer of technical textiles and automotive safety systems. A US grand jury in Detroit, Mich., USA, has indicted an executive of Takata with price-fixing in the automotive seatbelt market. The federal grand jury indicted Hiromu Usuda, former Takata group and department manager in customer relations, with one count of conspiring to fix seatbelt prices the company sold to Japanese auto companies marketing in the US. The company has already paid a $71.3 million criminal fine in the case. Click here to read the article. Posted January 23, 2015

Costs of Those Corporate Tents at Golf Tournaments: A Lot. Every wonder what those coroporate tents that you see at professional golf tournaments cost to rent? The 2016 Ryder Cup is being held in Chaska, Minn., USA. According to an article posted on the website of the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal, the cost to rent the most expensive tents that hold up to 150 people are going for $600,000. Smaller tents are going for $275,000 to $425,000. Click here to read the article. Posted January 21, 2015

German Financial Institution Issues Report on Technical Textiles. Commerzbank, a German-based financial institution, has developed a report on the global technical textiles industry. A summary of the report issued January 16 forecasts a 2% increase in global production for 2015. Other key takeaways from the summary include there are 600 companies in Germany making technical textiles; 62% of the 2013 technical textiles made in Germany were exported; and, nearly 50% of the German textile industry is devoted to the manufacture of technical textiles. The summary is a little frustrating to read because it goes back and forth between nonwovens and technical textiles statistics. Commerzbank is offering the full report for free. Click here to read the press release. Posted January 21, 2015

China Filtration Society Leader to Speak at Nonwoven Conference. The keynote speaker for FILTREX Asia 2015 will be Wang Yanxi, Chairman of the Chinese Filtration Society. The conference, organized by EDANA, an international nonwoven association based in Belgium, will be held March 17-18, 2015, in Hong Kong. Mr. Wang's presentation is entitled "Present & Future of the Chinese Filtration and Separation Business." Click here to go to the EDANA website to find out more about the event. Posted January 21, 2015

Photo credit: IDF

Israel Defense Force Receives New Parachutes. According to The Times of Israel website, the Israeli army is replacing the current Tzabar parachute with a new US-made parachute called T-11. Unlike the Tzabar parachute, the T-11 is non-steerable but will be able to carry a heavier load and be deployed at a greater speed. It's a good article to read because it gives a brief history of the paratroopers in war and then questions the need and expense of the parachute in this modern era. Click here to read the article. Posted January 20, 2015

Geosynthetics Expert Recognized by Spanish Government for His Work. It's nice to see people get the recognition they deserve. Dr. Manuel Blanco has been honored with the Command of the Order of the Civil Merit by the King Felip VI of Span. Dr. Blanco, head of the Central Laboratory of Structures and Materials at Centro de Estudios y Experimentación de Obras Públicas (CEDEX) located in Madrid, Spain, has been involved in the field of geosynthetics since the 1970s, particularly in hydraulics applications and durability studies. Dr. Blanco was recognized for his more than 25 years of work on geomembranes in reservoirs. Click here to read an article about his award at the website of the International Geosynthetics Society. Post January 20, 2015 

Call for Entries Issued for Tectextil Innovation Award 2015. Messe Frankfurt, the organizer of Techtextil 2015 in Frankfurt, Germany, has issued a call for entries for its Techtextil Innovation Award. The deadline for receipt of entries is February 20, 2015. The competition is open to all Techtextil 2015 exhibitors as well as other companies, institutes, universities and individuals. All award-winning projects will be featured at a special exhibition held during the Techtextil event which runs May 4-7, 2015. Click here for more information. Posted January 20, 2015

Redesign Expected for Orion Airbag Flotation System. Today seems to be the day to post information about the use of technical textiles in spacecraft applications. According to the website Spaceflight Now, "engineers plan to redesign part of the Orion capsule's self-righting flotation system that only partially engaged as the spacecraft splashed down" following its test flight in December. Only 3 of the 5 bags inflated and 2 of the 3 failed to maintain pressure. Click here to read the article. Posted January 19, 2015

Ray Haries (L), president of Bally Ribbon, and Charles Bolden (R), NASA Administrator

NASA Official Visits Bally Ribbon Mills. National Aeronautic Space Agency (NASA) Administrator Charles Bolden led an agency delegation during a January 9 tour of Bally Ribbon Mills (BRM), a key supplier of a 3D woven composite quartz and carbon fiber material that will be used in the thermal compression pad protection system for the Orion spacecraft which will eventually carry astronauts to Mars. The high-temperature material must withstand heat of 4,000 degrees encountered as the craft re-enters the atmosphere upon its return. BRM, established in 1923 as a manufacturer of hat bands, now employs 270 workers and is a producer of many types of narrow fabrics and technical textiles. Nice to see Ray Harries and his company recognized for their contribution to the space program. Click here to read an article about the NASA visit. Posted January 19, 2015

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Coming Events

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