2nd quarter 2009
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Coated Industrial Textiles: Coating Technologies and Profiles of Three Specialist Producers
published in Issue 77, 2nd quarter 2009
Coated fabrics are employed in a wide variety of applications, ranging from protective clothing to architectural materials. Established technologies involve the application of elastomers and silicones, polyurethane (PU), and polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) to textiles using processes such as direct coating, transfer coating, online coating, extrusion coating and calendering. However, recent advances have included plasma coating, nanocoating and inkjet deposition, with the aim of improving functionality, reducing costs and improving the level of environmental friendliness of manufacturing operations.
Plasma coating was originally developed for use in military clothing, in order to protect the wearer from chemical agents. Today it is used mainly for liquid repellency in applications such as performance footwear. However, recent research has gone into finding ways of using the technique to reduce the amount of functional additive required for the production of nonwovens for the hygiene industry.
Nanocoating involves the application of nano-sized particles on to a substrate in order to provide specific specialist performance properties. Coatings which incorporate nanotechnology are usually used for medical applications, mainly those involving antiviral and biocidal requirements.
Inkjet deposition involves the application of chemical coatings to a substrate using the same technology which is used for digital inkjet printing. Although the use of this technique in technical textiles is still in its infancy, its benefits are deemed to be substantial, especially by the participants of Digitex—an R&D project involving TenCate and 15 other companies which has been partly funded by the EU.
Specific developments in coated fabrics include: textiles with dirt repellency and self-cleaning attributes; textiles which change colour in response to changes of temperature or when they come into contact with acid; shear thickening fluid which stiffens to provide body armour; rubber-like fabrics which are impermeable to toxic chemicals; stain resistant fabrics; and waterproof fabrics.
- Coated Industrial Textiles: Coating Technologies and Profiles of Three Specialist Producers
- Development of Textile Coating Technology
- Key Industrial Textile Coatings
- Industrial Textile Coating Processes
- Key Emerging Areas of Technological Development in Textile Coating
- Recent Developments in Industrial Textile Coatings
- Profile of ContiTech Elastomer Coatings
- Profile of Gamma Holding
- Profile of Sioen Industries