News about the Global Technical Textiles Industry
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Outdoor Venture Corporation Acquires Sotera Engineered Solutions Division. Sotera Defense Solutions (Sotera), a provider of mission-critical, technology-based systems, solutions and services for US government programs, today announced that Outdoor Venture Corporation (OVC) of Stearns, K., USA, has purchased Sotera's Engineered Solutions (ES) division. OVC is a prime supplier and contractor of military tent systems, components and accessories to the US Department of Defense. Sotera delivers services and components for expeditionary systems such as field kitchens and sanitary equipment for the US military. Click here to read the press release on the acquisition. Posted October 21, 2014
The 2014 International Achievement Awards competition winners were announced at the IFAI Specialty Fabrics Expo. Click here to view the names of all winning companies in each of the categories.
Was it a good show? What did exhibitors say? Who received Honored Life Member status in the Industrial Fabrics Association International? Click here to read the day-to-day reports.
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Company Producing Ebola Protective Suit Every 4.5 Seconds. As we have said before, the technical textiles industry thrives on the needs that come from wars, natural disasters and pandemics. We just saw a short article on the China website Xiamen News about a company called Microgard Xiamen Limited, a British company with a manufacturing operation in Xiamen, China. The company's daily production is now up to 8,000 disposable protective suits, which amounts to one being made every 4.5 seconds. Click here to see the article. Posted October 25, 2014
Acrylic-Based Fabrics Creates Flame-Resistant Clothing Opprtunity. The website Crains Chicago Business has a nice article posted about Drifire LLC and their efforts to develop clothing that would protect military troops in cases of extreme heat. The traditional undergarments worn by the military were polyester-based fabrics. But polyester tended to melt in situations like explosions and cause serious additional injuries for already wounded warriors. Drifier developed a flame-resistant acrylic based fabric they've branded Drifire 4.4. The "4.4" refers to its weight of 4.4 ounces per square yard. It's become a $50 million business for them. Click here to read the article. Posted October 24, 2014
Largest Technical Textiles Plant in Russia Being Built. The website Innovation in Textiles has a very interesting article on the plans for a new technical textiles plant in Russia. The company building the facility, BTK Holding, is already one of Russia's largest producers of technical textiles and apparel. According to the article, "The new plant will focus on the production of high-tech synthetic textiles." The capacity of the new plant will be in the range of 5-6 million square meters per year; however, it is unclear from the article what is the exact fabric that will be produced. The article also offers some statistics and observations for end product markets in Russia. The demand for technical textiles for the domestic automotive industry, for example, is said to exceed 220 million meters annually. Click here to read the article. Posted October 23, 2014
Tension Fabric Builder Partners with Storage Consulting Firm in Canada. RUBB Inc., a subsidiary of the Rubb Group AS, has announced the appointment of Aztec Group as its Canadian Agent. Rubb, originally based in Norway, with North American operations based in the US, is an international company which manufactures galvanized steel framed fabric covered structures. Click here to read the company news release on the Canadian market partnership. Posted October 21, 2014
Small Family Business Grows into Technical Textiles Enterprise. There is a nice article on the Finger Lakes Times website (Palmyra, New York, USA) about V Technical Textiles, a family run company. V Technical Textiles is an independently owned subsidiary of the German company Statex. The company both fabricates products made of technical textiles and is also the distributor for conductive textiles made by Statex. V Technical Textiles fabricates products such as tents, shelters and antimicrobial clothing. A nice read about a successful local family business. Click here to go to the Finger Lake website. Posted October 21, 2014.
Ebola Crisis Needs Creates Interest in Technical Textile Products. At the recent IFAI Specialty Faabrics Expo, the Ebola crisis created several inquiries to us about how the industry can get involved in the protective equipment industry. DuPont has a good site that contains a technical bulletin called Protective Clothing for Ebola Virus Disease (EVD). Two material compliant standards appear to be the relevant for making products: ASTM F1670 and ASTM F1671. Click here to go to the DuPont website and learn more. Good succinct article. Posted October 20, 2014
Beavers Parachuted into Remote Locations. When we found an article about parachuting beavers, we just had to tell you about it. The Idaho Statesman website posted an article about parachuting beavers that originally appeared in the November 2012 issue of Smithsonian Air & Space magazine. That story, in turn, was about a 1950 report in the Journal of Wildlife Management called "Transplanting Beavers by Airplane and Parachute." Beavers had apparently become an annoyance to the encroaching population in parts of Idaho in the 1950s, so the Idaho Fish and Game Department began innovative ways to transfer beavers out of the way of suburbia, including parachuting them in collapsible cages into remote locations. The cages opened on impact and the beavers went along their way. A fun article to read, especially about one old beaver that they kept dropping by parachute to test the system. Click here to see the article. Posted October 20, 2014
2015 Techtextil North America Names Symposium Advisory Committee. The organizers of the twelfth edition of Techtextil North America (TTNA) has announced the organization of a symposium along the trade show which will have eleven sessions with over 35 presentations. TTNA is taking place June 2-4, 2015 and is once again co-located with JEC Americas. The sessions include new fiber technology, smart textiles, medical, geosynthetics, aerospace, protective, sustainability, tension structures, and nonwoven advancement. Members of the advisory committee forming the sessions are:
Click here for more information. Posted October 10, 2014
Scovill Fasteners Sold to Morito. The Gores Group continued to make industry news late yesterday with an announcement that the company had entered into an agreement to sell Scovill Fasteners to Morito, a global supplier of apparel fasteners, components for automobiles and cameras, and other niche manufactured products. Morito is base in Osaka, Japan. Scovill, founded in 1802 and based in Clarkesville, Ga., USA, is a manufacturer of fasteners to technical textile markets such as medical, military and sporting goods. The Gores Group had acquired Scovill in June 2011. Click here to read the press release. Posted October 10, 2014
Foundation Scholarship Winners Announced. The Industrial Fabrics Foundation (IFF) 2014 scholarship winners have been announced. Selections were made on the basis of academic achievement, community services and interest in a future career in the specialty fabrics industry. The recipients are:
Congratulations to all the winners. Entry forms for 2015 will be available online at www.indfabfnd.com/scholarships. Posted October 10, 2014
Navy Testing Welding Clothes Rather Than Sewing. The website kdhnews.com of Killeen, Tex., USA, has an interesting article and video posted on its website regarding the US Navy's testing of ultrasonic welding clothing seams rather than traditional sewing. Welding the uniforms together could make them lighter, stronger and cheaper, according to the report. The vidoe also says WalMart is experimenting with having consumer apparel welded rather than sewn. Click here to see the article and watch the video. Posted October 10, 2014
Sage Automotive Interiors Sold. The Gores Group, a Los Angeles, Calif., USA investment firm, has announce the sale of Sage Automotive Interiors to Clearlake Capital Group, an investment firm based in Santa Monica, Calif., USA. Sage is the largest supplier of automotive seating fabrics. It was formed in 2009 when management completed a buyout to acquire Milliken & Company's automotive business. Its customers include Ford, GM, Chrysler, Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Hyundai and Volkswagen. Click here to read the press release. Posted October 9, 2014
US Navy Building Unmanned Inflatable Boats. To counter the swarm of small boats that often come out to challenge US Naval ships in close water situations, the US is meeting the threat with the launching of its own swarm of unmanned inflatable boats with remote-controlled weapons system. The fire-control system on the ship is capable of coordinating up to 20 of those unmanned boats at once. Click here to read this interesting article. Posted October 9, 2014
2014 SGIA Expo Preview. While admittedly biased, Dan Marx, Vice President-Markets & Technologies at the Specialty Graphics Imaging Association (SGIA), gives a very good explanation of why the SGIA Expo remains the number one NOrth American trade show for those involved in wide format printing. 2014 SGIA Expo is taking place in Las Vegas, Nev., USA, October 22-24. Click here to read his article posted on the whattheythink.com website. Posted October 9, 2014
Ebola Crisis Increases Demands for Material and Protective Gear. The website PlasticsToday.com posted a report yesterday that the Ebola outbreak in western Africa has created a surge in demand for personal protective equipment from manufacturers. The World Health Organization plans to send about 400,000 protective suits to west Africa. 3M plans to send as many as 500,000 a month. DuPont has reportedly tripled production of Tychem C protective suits and Tyvek garments. Kimberly-Clark, a manufacturer of Kleenguard protective clothing, has also significantly increased production. Click here to read the article. Posted October 8, 2014
Canada Release New Collapsible Fuel Bladder Standard. According to the website for the Canadian Mining Journal, the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) has released the first edition of a collapsible fabric storage tanks regulation. This standard will be a first for storage tanks or pillow tanks. While popular in the military, the commercial applications for collapsible fuel bladders has been slow due to a lack of standards and concern for the environment. The next step in the process will be to begin certifying products to this standard. Click here to read the entire article. Posted October 7, 2014
US Releases August Export Figures for Specialty Fabrics. The US Office of Textiles & Apparel (OTEXA) has released the August export numbers for the Specialty and Industrial Fabrics group. Comparing 2013 and 2014 12-month periods ending August 31, total US exports increased $307 million to more than $4 billion. Click here for the full report. Posted October 7, 2014
Natick Self-Cleaning Fabric Introduced to the Commercial Market. A self-cleaning fabric treatment developed by the US Army's Natick Soldier Research Development and Engineering Center (NSRDEC) and industry partner Luna Innovations, Inc., is now making its way into the commercial marketplace. The fabric coating greatly reduces how often the material has to be cleaned. The omniphonic coating significantly lowers dirt and dust attraction, and repels water, oil and many liquid chemicals. Click here to read the NSRDEC public affairs story that was released on the US Army's website. Posted October 6, 2014
GeoAmericas 2016 Issues Call for Proposals. The 3rd Pan-American Conference on Geosynthetics (GeoAmericas 2016) has issued a call for proposals for short courses, technical sessions and training sessions. The event will be held in Miami, Fla., USA, April 11-16, 2016. Deadline for the proposals is November 15, 2014. A separate call for abstracts for individual papers will be issued in January 2015. GeoAmericas 2016 is hosted by the North American Geosynthetics Society (NAGS) and held under the auspices of the International Geosynthetics Society (IGS). Minerva -- Technology & Resources & Information is managing the event. Click here to view the call for proposals press release. Corrected version posted October 7, 2014
Ebola Crisis Increases Demands for Hazmat Suits. According the website Business Insider, the current Ebola health crisis in Africa has resulted in a 30% increase in the value of shares for Lakeland Industries, a manufacturer of hazmat protective clothing. Lakeland's corporate headquarters is in Ronkonkoma, N;Y; US. According to another website, Investment Watch, the US government recently put out a bid for 160,000 hazmat suits in response to the Ebola health care fight. Click here to read the Business Insider article. Posted October 6, 2014
Centre for Excellence Planned for UK. TenCate Advanced Composites has announced plans for the growth and expansion of equipment and facilities at their manufacturing plant in Langley Mill, Nottingham, UK. The company says the investment will bring additional capability and capacity for fabric and University of Delaware-based products, including relatively new composite markets such as space, and select aerospace high temperature end-user applications. Click here for to read the TenCate press release. Posted October 6, 2014
Textile Structures Student Design Competition Announced. Techtextil, an international trade fair for technical textiles and nonwovens, has announced in cooperation with the TensiNet association, it is once again organizing the Textile Structures for New Building student design competition. Techtextil 2015 is taking place May 4-7, 2015. The technical/scientific supervisor for the competition is Professor Werner Sobek, Director of the Institute for Lightweight Structures and Conceptual Design (ILEK) of the University of Stuttgart. Deadline for submissions is February 27, 2015. Click here for more details. Posted October 6, 2014
Barcode System for Finding Your Tent. What do you do if you are one of the 2 million haj pilgrims and you have to find the correct white tent out of thousands erected during your journey in Saudi Arabia? According to the website Arab News, the Saudi government has introduced a barcode system that matches the pilgrim to the correct shelter. Each traveler is given a wrist band with a tent barcode and then traveler guides along the journey will help you locate your designated shelter. Click here to read the article. Posted October 6, 2014
Major Carbon Fiber Plant Expansion in France. Hexcel Corporation announced today that it will expand its carbon fiber production capacity through the addition of new precursor and carbon fiber lines in Roussillon, France. The $250 million investment will also include the associated Quality Control laboratories and offices.Click here to read the Hexcel company press release. Posted October 2, 2014
IFAI Announces Dates and Location of 2015 Shows. The Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) has announced both the 2015 Specialty Fabrics Expo and the Advanced Textiles Expo will be taking place October 6-9, 2015 in Anaheim, Calif., USA. Taking place along with the Specialty Fabrics and Advance Textiles events will be the introduction of a third show called Shade Expo. It is being designated a stand-alone event with a concentrated focus on all things sun protection. Click here to read the release. Posted September 31, 2014
Teijin Aramid Receives Award for Developing Carbon Nanotube Fibers. Researchers of Teijin Aramid, based in the Netherlands, and Rice University, based in the US, have been awarded the honorary "Paul Schlack Man-Made Fibers Prize" for corporate-academic partnership in fiber research. The honary award was given by the European Man-Made Fibers Association for the development of a new generation of super fibers using carbon nanotubes. Click here to read the Teijin press release. Posted September 31, 2014
SYFA Fall Conference Features Key Industry Leaders. The Synthetic Yarn and Fiber Association's Fall Conference will have special presentation from Auggie Tantillo, president of the National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO), and Dr. James A. Hayward, CEO and president of Applied DNA Sciences. NCTO is considered the voice of the US domestic textile industry and Mr. Tantillo will be giving a report on the state of the industry as well as progress reports on pending trade agreements. Dr. Hayward's company was recently in the news with the announcement of a $3 million contract with the US Department of Defense to supply its counterfeit protection DNA marking technology to a host of new components destined for use by the military. The SYFA conference will take place October 3-4 in Charlotte, N.C., USA. Click here for more information on registering. Posted September 29, 2014
Institutes for Manufacturing Innovation Considering Fiber and Textiles. Here's something you might want to check out if you are a US domestic textile industry manufacturer: A few months ago the US Department of Defense (DoD) issued a Request for Information (RFI) as it began the process of developing future Institutes for Manufacturing Innovation (IMI). Fibers and textiles is one of the six new areas under consideration. Each of the IMIs is built around a specific manufacturing technology. An information meeting for a proposed fiber and textile IMI is now scheduled for Wednesday, October 1, at Gaston College's Textile Technology Center in Belmont, N.C., USA. Each IMI will have a minimum of $70 million in federal funding and $70 million in funding from states and industry over a 5-7 year period. The DoD plans to create 2 of these manufacturing sector institutes each year, with an overall total of 15 IMIs. Devin Steele, publisher of the website eTextile Communications, has written a nice blog about the upcoming event. Click here to read. Posted September 29, 2014
Yarn Manufacturer Purchases Textile Plant in Mexico. The website for the Charlotte Observer newspaper (Charlotte, N.C., USA) is reporting North Carolina-based Parkdale Mills has acquired the remaining half of Summit Yarns, a joint venture yarn plant located south of Mexico City. Parkdale purchased the half of the operation owned by International Textile Group. Parkdale is one of the world's largest supplier of spun yarns. Click here to read the article. Posted September 29, 2014
New Test Methods for Light-Blocking Window Coverings. AATCC, the Association of Textile, Apparel & Materials Professionals, has published two new test methods to measure the effectiveness of blocking light passing through material. One test uses a spectrophotometric method which is applicable for knits, wovens and nonwovens and the other uses a photodetector method which can be used on various textile-based materials, including coated textiles. Click here to read more from AATCC. Posted September 29, 2014
New Method for Measuring Tent Space. Gizmodo, one of our favorite websites, posted an article September 20 on a method developed comparing the interior volume and shape between two or more tents without setting them up side-by-side. Two tents with exactly the same measured floor space can have immensely different interior space depending on the shape of the tent. The intent of the new method is to have a standardized methodology for manufacturers and retailers to use when comparing different tents. Click here to read the article. Posted October 26, 2014
EDANA Launches New Asia Award. EDANA, an international trade organization, has announced a new award for the Asia/Pacific nonwovens industry. The award is called Outlook™. The award winner will be announced at Outlook Asia 2014, an EDANA event taking place October 26-27 in Singapore. Companies can either nominate a nonwoven product, a product containing nonwoven elements, or a service for personal care and hygiene, which has been developed, designed, manufactured and/or is on sale in Asia Pacific. Click here for more information. Posted October 27, 2014
Lenzing Chief Operating Officer Resigns. In a press release issued September 25 by Lenzing AG, Friedrich Weninger, Chief Operating Officer, has announced a decision not to seek a contract extension as a Member of the Management Board after his current contract expires December 31, 2014. Lenzing is a global leader in the manufacture of manmade cellulose fibers. According to the Lenzing website, the Lenzing Group has been impacted in the first half of 2014 by the ongoing difficult market conditions creating low fiber selling prices. Mr. Friedrich has been with the company for more than 25 years. He will continue to serve as a consultant for the Lenzing Group after his COO contract ends. Click here to read the company release. Posted September 26, 2014
US Coast Guard Clarifies PFD Labeling. The United States Coast Guard (USCG) is trying to harmonize the US rules with those of Canada and make a North American standard, according to a report posted on the website examiner.com. The new labeling rules which go into effect on October 22, 2014 reduce the number of types of code for a personal flotation device (PFD). Click here to read the article and for contact information at the USCG if you desire more information. Posted September 26, 2014
MIT Developing New Space Suits Using SMA Material. There is a short interesting article by Professor Seshadri Ramkumar about the use of shape memory alloys (SMA) that are being tested for space suit applications. The SMA provides a skin-tight suit when heated and are not dependent on the traditional presurized gas. Click here to read the article found on CommodityOnLine.com. Posted September 26, 2014
IFAI Vice President Resigns. Two sources have told BeaverLake6 Report that Todd Lindemann, vice president of Conference Management for the Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI), resigned yesterday. Mr. Lindemann has been with the trade organization for many years and has served as the conference management vice president since 2006. His responsibilities included management of the IFAI Specialty Fabrics Expo that is taking place October 14-16 in Minneapolis, Minn., USA. Posted September 24, 2014
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