Testing and Standards for a Global Textile Industry

Diana Wyman, Executive Vice President, AATCC

It’s no secret that we live in a global community and work in a global marketplace. Responding to global challenges like microfiber pollution and e-textile evaluation require new approaches. AATCC is finding new ways to incorporate diverse perspectives from across the textile industry and beyond to develop standard test methods that offer a common language for communicating expectations for safety, quality, and performance.

A Novel Approach to Dyeing Using Foam Technology

Presented is a way to dye cotton fabrics without the use of salt or alkali, while at the same time greatly reducing the water usage to less than one kg of water per kg of cotton and in turn reducing energy consumption. This more sustainable process has been validated with a production history over the last several years.

The ever-changing color trends often driven by fashion experts, keep the consumers appetite for the latest colors in apparel and home furnishings regularly unsatisfied. Both annual and seasonal changes help fuel sales which help the retailer, textile manufacture and all of the supply chain
that supports the production of these new products. Traditional methods of dyeing cotton fabrics require large amounts of water, a significant amount of energy to heat the dye bath and rinse water, as well as significant amounts of salt and alkali. An unfortunate byproduct of this production is significant water pollution from the processes that it takes to put the color into these products. This presentation delves into an alternative process in dyeing cotton that takes a
specially prepared cotton substrate and dyes the substrate with a very low moisture foam application. Dye liquor ratios of .5 to 1 are being used without the use of salt or alkali with speeds up to 50 yards/min and no rinsing of the fabric after dyeing. The resulting process reduces typical effluent and energy use by 75 to 80 percent.

Evolution of Chemical Applicators for Textiles – a Historical Review of Chasing Water

Our industry began in fields out in the open when Man was mostly Nomadic and washers were rivers. With the change to a more stationary lifestyle, the location moved to the yards, porches, kitchens, and laundries of homesteaders. The General Store needed a supply chain thus creating large laundries followed by large mills for larger runs of fabric. As the world became more global, the larger mills moved to faraway places and we returned to smaller ones. Laundries for garments once again were in vogue and only recently have lost favor due to pollution and excess water consumption. Enter laser engraving of fabric, ozone gas treatment for preparation and plasma for finishing. Now water is gone. Enter nonwovens and applicators are gone with the placement of particles in the substrate which perform the roll of chemistry. What an exciting time to live!