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Techtextil 2010 Preview



A look at technical textiles show set for Atlanta, GA in May



Published March 18, 2010
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The seventh edition of North America’s only dedicated show for technical textiles and nonwovens will be held May 18-20, 2010 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, Georgia.
Techtextil North America assembles all vertical aspects of the technical textile industry. From research and development, through raw materials and production processes and finally ending in conversion, further treatment and recycling.
Held in conjunction with the exhibit hall, is Techtextil North America Symposium which will offer dozens of sessions focusing on the latest in research and emerging technology. The Symposium is structured to allow ample opportunity for attendees to conduct business and network on the show floor as well.

Textile and Sewn Products Industry Week

In 2010, as part of a new co-location effort, ATME-I/MEGATEX and SPESA Expo will run concurrently alongside Techtextil North America.
The three shows will take place in adjacent halls during the same dates, providing tremendous value for textile and sewn products industry professionals at all levels of the textile and sewn products manufacturing and application supply chains.  This new concept will create a truly “must-attend” industry event for the Americas in 2010. Atlanta is a vibrant international hub which is easily accessed by exhibitors and visitors alike, providing the perfect setting for such a significant industry gathering.

The co-location and alignment means that attendees will be able to move freely between the individual shows and benefit from the industry-leading educational and networking seminars and special events all in the same venue.

Symposium

The latest technology, applications, and the overall direction of the technical textile and nonwovens industry will be presented by experts and leaders from around the world during the Techtextil North America Symposium.

Held concurrently with the exhibition, the symposium will contain thirteen sessions with more than 65 presentations in a variety of formats that will cover a wide range of topics from high performance nonwovens, sustainable materials, military developments and research to smart fabrics and medical textiles.

“This year’s symposium is an exciting mix of technical to markets/marketing oriented programs,” said Bill Smith, symposium director.  “Innovation is a major factor in our industry and as the economy improves, companies and individuals need practical information to give them direction. In the 2010 edition, speakers will tell you where we are in the economy and in our industry, what is coming down the road, and ideas for adapting new technology to your business.”
During the keynote session Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Textiles and Apparel, Kim Glas, will address the range of trade issues affecting the technical textiles industry and include some information on the Department’s Sustainable Manufacturing Initiative.  Other topics in this opening session will include a worldwide industry overview, status of the U.S. manufacturing sector and implications for technical textiles, plus the importance of technical textiles. Additional sessions include:

• Natural Fibers and Sustainable Materials: Use of sustainable materials in technical textiles is becoming an important issue in the industry. While synthetic fibers dominate, natural fibers, such as flax, cotton, and kenaf are still widely used and are 'making a comeback' in many areas. Others, like PLA fibers, though man-made materials, are also sustainable. Included in the session will be unique applications as well as important differences between “sustainable” and  “green.”

• Technical Textile Research: The National Textile Center will again participate with Techtextil North America in presenting the latest, most relevant work being done by the National Textile Center Universities. These sessions highlight research in the industry that will drive developments to improve materials and make possible new products. The final selection of topics and presenters will be determined by the National Textile Center at a later date based on the status of the projects and relevance of the work, but it is anticipated that research currently being done in the fields of biomedical textiles, energy, biohazards, environmental, and textile manufacturing (high-tech process control) will be presented.

• Military Developments : This topic has always been one of the most successful in the history of the symposium and will once again be led by Eugene Wilusz, Ph.D. from Natick Soldier RD&E Center. Subjects under development include a variety of ballistics, chemical, flame retardant, etc. A special talk will focus on a customization of nonwoven military uniforms – is this the future?

• New Product Development: In this recessionary time, every forward thinking company is, or should be, focusing on developing new products. What will be the next product or variation needed to continue, compete, and grow? Often misunderstood and poorly done, the question is how to do it most effectively which will be the focus of this special session. Product development will be presented as a way of expanding a company’s base, preparing for the future, and "growing where you are planted.”

• Nonwovens: The role and impact of nonwoven fabrics to our industry will be covered in many sessions as well as two dedicated ones.  The first will focus on the developments and opportunities for nonwovens in a broad range of technical filtration applications. The second will offer a fresh look at some of the techniques involved in producing high performance nonwoven fabrics- and what impact they may have on the end product and promise of products with new/improved properties.

• Smart/Intelligent Fabrics: These fabrics are more than wires woven into a garment, they are materials that “do something”, by reacting to an outside stimuli to conduct electricity, change color, emit medicines, become FR, or even change form. This session will delve into the fast growing world of smart fabrics/textiles.

Other sessions include: High Performance Narrow Fabrics, Unique Fiber and Yarn Developments, Protective Textiles, Technology and Medical Textiles/Biotechnology.

An Industry Snapshot

This year’s show will feature more than 100 exhibitors from around the world who will present innovations throughout all areas of the technical textiles supply chain. From nonwovens producers to yarn supplier and machinery and equipment makers to converters, the show will feature a real microcosm of what the technical textiles market has to offer. Here is a preview of what some exhibitors have to offer:

AccuSentry

AccuSentry will introduce the Sentry-Dashboard, which is used to present real-time production intelligence and deliver business intelligence to drive better decision making. The Sentry-Dashboard converts real-time inspection information into actionable intelligence.
Specifically, the Sentry-Dashboard will provide three different KPI dashboards: Production, Plant and Executive.

The Production Dashboard displays information specifically related to each production line that is useful for the line operators and line manager to run the line efficiently. Each Production Dashboard allows the line operators and line manager to closely monitor the production performance and process trends. It displays information to steer the line operators to take preventive and corrective actions, resolving problems and exceptions before they become production issues.

The Plant Dashboard focuses on information essential to achieving organizational alignment and business objectives. It consolidates production data from all the lines and presents line performance benchmarks. The Plant Dashboard communicates the company’s strategy to the plant personnel and describes how the strategy relates to their work and what success will mean to both their work group and the organization.  The plant dashboard is designed to foster team work and a real-time continuous improvement culture that is focused on meeting performance goals.  

The Executive Dashboard focuses more on tactical intelligence that is essential to timely decision making.  Continuous monitoring of vital trends in business performance allows the management team to stay close to the pulse of the production operation in real-time. The Executive Dashboard displays relevant intelligence to help the management team to “fine tune” the business operation. It allows the management team to quickly identify constraints, set priorities, and optimize resource allocations. The dashboard provides a visual measure of strategic, tactical, and organizational alignment.

Dramatic improvements in water expression and major cost and energy savings in drying are achieved by a novel roll covering technology for fabric dewatering applications.
Carolina Silver

At Techtextil Carolina Silver will exhibit its silver coated yarns, fibers and fabrics. These products are used for their  antimicrobial, conductive and EMI shielding properties. At Techtextil, the company will introduce a new and improved silver coated staple fiber. The most notable feature is ease of processing. It can be blended with other fibers used in spinning at normal machine speeds with no expected change in ends down.

The fiber can be used in blowing operations with no preprocessing. It could be ideal for nonwovens. The product can be engineered to various deniers and cut lengths.

Richard Hough

Specialist squeeze roll manufacturer Richard Hough Ltd. (RHL) has collaborated with Just Rollers plc, world leader in elastomer roll coverings, to develop the new Resilio system. Trials have identified substantial performance benefits over the existing market-leading elastomer roll cover:
• Typically 40% better expression on knitted goods.
• Typically 18% better expression on wovens.
Cost savings are equally significant, potentially reaching as much as €50,000 per year depending on the applications.

The Resilio roll will be featured at Techtextil North America from May 18-20, 2010, when it will be the main focus of the RHL presentation at the event.

RHL has applied for a patent for the new Resilio roll, which combines the company’s own expertise in mechanical squeezing and dewatering equipment with specially-developed dual-layer technology for the covering. The secret is in the integration of the squeezing power of the sub-layer with a revolutionary profile-hugging top layer, devised by RHL.
Says RHL’s Anthony Ashton:  “This greatly increases the surface contact in the nip, thus expressing the liquid from every void and undulation in the fabric, with microscopic efficiency.”
Other key features of the new Resilio roll include:

• Greatly improved ‘gentle’ squeezing performance compared to hard rubber rolls.
• Superb bond strength.
• Resistance to the majority of processing chemicals.
• Very hard wearing – excellent abrasion resistance.
• Increased service life compared to standard hard rubber rolls.
• Uniquely-developed compound blends.

RHL, of Bolton, Lancashire, also manufactures the world-famous Roberto roll, as well as extra-tough Resistor roll coverings for use in demanding environments where harsh or aggressive chemicals and resins are used.

New compounds for the latest Resilio and Resilio-Resistor products have been developed and perfected through an intensive testing program in Europe and the U.S. and RHL now believes machinery manufacturers need to respond quickly to the increasing need for greater fuel economy and lower emissions, driven by the long-term prospect of high oil prices.
Said Anthony Ashton: “The new Resilio and Resilio-Resistor compounds will challenge textile finishing machinery designers to develop new energy-efficient and ‘gentle’ fabric-processing machines to suit the rigorous demands of the 21st century – and the machinery manufacturer that chooses the wrong technology options may risk being marginalized.”

Kuraray America

Kuraray’s Vectran HT LCP fibers are used in challenging end use areas where high strength and stiffness must be accompanied by dimensional stability and high durability.  At Techtextil, Kuraray America, Inc. is introducing new finishes and fiber designs to further enhance abrasion resistance and fatigue life.  In the past year, the company has also introduced new EX grades for elevated temperature service.

Norafin

At the upcoming Techtextil North America Norafin will present a wide selection of powerful hydroentangled and needlepunched product solutions and composites that are used in the sector of filtration, protective clothing and industrial specialty applications.
Norafin’s Komanda Material, an innovative, multifunctional nonwoven for the protective clothing market, is a powerful alternative to conventional textiles for industrial flame retardant workwear, military uniforms and protective clothing against electric arcs. The combination of a custom-engineered spunlace composite and newest state-of-the-art chemical treatments meet requirements such as washing resistance, softness, breathability and abrasion resistance.
Norafin’s 3-D Performance Material offers a variety of advantages in the sector of protective clothing. Thanks to the air entrapped within the product and its special surface quality, the nonwoven allows improved insulation and increased comfort in its end use. If the 3D Performance Product is manufactured with microfibers (0.9 dtex, meta/para-aramid), it allows significant savings in weight in, for example, motorsport applications while maintaining the performance at the same level. In combination with the in-house aftertreatment possibilities, improved abrasion resistance or increased water and oil repellent properties can be achieved.
In the sector of composites Norafin has carried out further developments on the basis of both manmade and natural fibers (e.g. flax). If a material needs to possess high tear strength, high durability and robustness, the natural characteristics of the flax fiber offer several advantages. By rea­son of its naturally-given strengthening qualities and its vibration-absorbing properties, flax fiber possess many advantageous attributes which can be usefully employed in the composite sector.

Norafin’s carbonized nonwovens, which are based on pre-oxidized fibers, permit highly conductive materials to be manufactured.
The company encompasses its filtration products under the name Norafin Crystalen. These include custom-made product solutions for process-oriented air filtration (high temperature-resistant cartridge filters, bag filters, self-pleating.

Two Events in 2011

Executives involved in technical textiles will have two events in 2001.  Techtextil Frankfurt, the industry’s largest trade show, will be held May 24-26, 2011 in Frankfurt, Germany.  The previous Techtextil event in Frankfurt brought trade visitors from 85 countries together.
Additionally, two of the industry’s most innovative events, Texprocess and Material Vision, will be held at the same time as Techtextil. Texprocess, the new leading fair for the garment and textile processing industry, is aimed at a host of trade visitors from these most important industrial sectors. The trade fair features the latest machinery, plant, processes and services for the make-up of textile and other flexible materials.

Meanwhile, Material Vision is a magnet for product developers, designers and architects. The
event puts innovative materials, made from metal, polymers, ceramics/glass, stone, wood and renewable raw materials, center stage.

Also in 2011, Techtextil North America will be held April 15-16 in Atlantic City, NJ.
More information: www.techtextil.com; www.techtextilna.com.