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    Technology gives fabrics the power to act and react

    Advanced Textiles, Products, Technical | July 1, 2008 | By:

    Adapting shoes to weather conditions

    Special superabsorbing fleece from BASF inside the new innovative ventilation element Vayu Verde makes it possible to adapt shoes to different weather conditions. Photo: IQTEX.

    Wet feet? Never again. German companies IQTEX and BASF have jointly developed a unique, intelligent system that adapts shoes to suit weather conditions. To make this possible, IQTEX has processed a special superabsorbing fleece from BASF into an innovative ventilation element known as Vayu Verde®. When the material gets wet (for example, if the wearer steps in a puddle) the superabsorbing fleece in the ventilation element immediately expands and self-seals the system. It even stays watertight under high pressure. As soon as the material integrated into the sole of the shoe dries, it regains its breathability within minutes, and the wearer feels a cool and pleasant sensation. Rain or shine, feet will stay dry.

    The fleece in Vayu Verde contains superabsorbent polymers and is marketed by BASF as Luquafleece®. This functional material can absorb large amounts of aqueous liquids, and, thanks to its reversible moisture-binding system, is capable of absorbing and releasing large amounts of moisture and humidity. The material is already being used for increased climate comfort in office chairs and protective clothing.

    For more information, visit

    Suit boosts swimmer performance

    Powerskin R-evolution boosts swimmer performance. Photo: Arena International.
    Powerskin R-evolution boosts swimmer performance. Photo: Arena International.

    Hydrophobic, lightweight and seamless, the Powerskin R-evolution suit from Arena International is set up in a single piece, giving it unsurpassed penetration power into water and a gliding performance. The material weighs only 99 grams/square meter, 20 percent lighter than the first Powerskin generation created in 2000. The men’s R-evolution suit, the Arena, weighs 100 grams when dry, 5 percent lighter by comparison than the previous version. For even more performance enhancement, at the end of a 50-meter freestyle race, the weight of water absorbed is infinitesimal; the droplets stream down the swimsuit as they would on the glass of a window. Arena combines the alchemy of the thinner fabric with a made-to-measure restraint on the muscles. The secret lies with the high percentage of elasthane (36 percent), which guarantees an optimal restraint force. Christened “Arena Stealth,” this excusive material offers a muscular restraint force that is 50 percent higher than a traditional textile material. The restraint allows the reduction of the vibrations produced by the muscle under conditions of full exertion.

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    High performance in printing

    Evolon®, from French company Freudenberg Nonwovens, features a unique matte artistic look that provides outstanding printed results, sharp pictures and deep colors. It’s also compatible with an array of different digital printing technologies and inks. In addition to inkjet printing applications using water-based, solvent, eco-solvent and UV-cured inks, Evolon also performs in transfer/direct sublimation applications.

    Lightweight, soft and drapable, Evolon fabric is environmentally friendly at every stage. Photo: Freudenberg Nonwovens.
    Lightweight, soft and drapable, Evolon fabric is environmentally friendly at every stage. Photo: Freudenberg Nonwovens.

    Evolon is lightweight, soft and drapable, and can be cut and sewn like other fabrics. Its nonfraying edges provide the advantage of easier converting without the need for overstitching. A flame-retardant variant, in conjunction with its wrinkle-free properties, provides key benefits in indoor wide-format poster and hanging banner applications.

    PVC-free Evolon’s strength, ecological advantages, weather resistance and UV durability make it excellent for outdoor signage and banner applications, offering a structure four times lighter than that of traditional outdoor banner material. Environmentally friendly at every stage throughout its life cycle—from basic raw materials, to manufacturing, printing, converting, final application and recycling—there is no risk of halogeneous substance emissions upon disposal.

    Freudenberg Evolon is ISO 14001 accredited and fully compliant with European regulations on chemical products. It also complies with global industry agreements for flame retardancy: NFPA 701 in the United States, CA1237 for California, M1 in France and DIN 4102 B1 in Germany.

    For more information, visit

    Treated leather provides lightweight protection

    Ecological leather, set for snow. Photo: Dainese.
    Ecological leather, set for snow. Photo: Dainese.

    Dainese, based in Molvina, Italy, brings leather onto the snow by coupling this natural material with the highest Gore-Tex® technology: Gore-Tex® Pro Shell. The result is a new-generation product capable of providing protection against severe weather conditions with the lightest weight. The leather has been treated with a process known as “white tanning” that does not contain chrome, other heavy metals or formaldehyde. In addition to providing lighter weight and strength, this special treatment makes the leather hypoallergenic and 100 percent ecological: The finished product is an entirely recyclable garment. The LTD1 jacket is completely heat taped and comes in punched leather in different parts for the highest breathability and comfort. Elasticized inserts positioned under the arms, on the back and rising up to the center of the hood follow the body to ensure the greatest freedom of movement. The removable hood with elasticized central insert guarantees a perfect fit. Partially exposed zipper, waterproof front side pockets, chest pocket and ski pass pocket complete the jacket, which is also equipped with an adjustable gaiter around the waist and an internal removable thermal vest with two side pockets.

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