The production of technical textiles has been increasingly growing as more businesses venture into the sector. Manufacturers in this industry produce fibers that are useful in very many ways since unlike regular fabrics, technical textiles are taken through special chemical processes or even made using chemicals to ensure durability and resistance. This means that they posses distinct qualities which enable their usage in unique applications. Some of the most common technical fibers include glass fiber, modacrylic, polyethylene, acrylic fiber and polyester.
Technical Textiles- Qualities
Unlike other fabrics, technical textiles are produced for functional rather than aesthetic purposes. Thus, these fabrics hold excellent chemical and electrical properties, outstanding ultra violet resistance, low levels of moisture absorption and good abrasion resistance. Due to these great qualities, the fabrics are often used on sail cloth, fish netting, marine ropes, boat hulls and geotextiles applications. Other than that, they are applied in lining ponds and making radar protective covers. In short, their use has penetrated all industries including healthcare, transport, packaging, furnishings and the automotive industry, not to mention sports.
Functions of Technical Textiles
One of the key uses of technical textiles is to improve worker safety at the workplace. Just about all personal protective equipment is made using this kind of fabric. This clothing can save a person’s life, and the current regulations for worker safety have led to an even higher demand for them in various industries. For instance, fire fighters may sometimes have to deal with huge flames and toxic substances while at their place of work, and without protective clothing, their lives can be endangered. In the same way, workers in manufacturing industries can get burned by sparks, acid and molten metal among other harmful substances; nevertheless, with gear made from technical textiles, their safety is enhanced. Technical textiles are also of great importance in the aircraft manufacturing industry. These types of fibers are used in making door liners, seat covers and carpets. Most of the fabric produced particularly goes into the roof and door linings. The same fabric is used for safety belts and hoses and for tyre reinforcement in buses, trains and marine vehicles. Fittings such as airbags which are also made from the same fiber have been very useful safety features in the automotive industry as well. Besides, the healthcare sector has benefited from these synthetic textiles to the highest degree, and polyethylene in particular has been widely used in the medical field. Polyethylene comes in many forms and is both wrinkle and heat resistant. It also allows for polymerization and thermosetting .Thanks to such characteristics, it is very much used in making heart valves and medical implants. Hollow viscose and hollow polyester helps in the production of artificial kidneys that function in the same way as real kidneys whereas mechanical lungs can be produced using propropylene fiber. During the manufacture of medical surgery products, viscose functions quite well. Having been popularised in the 1990s, the demand for technical textiles has increased not only in Europe and the United States, but in the international market as well. This explains the existence of companies such as Baltex, a technical textile manufacturer that specializes in producing textiles for the automotive, aerospace, military and health sectors. The ongoing research in the industry means the market can expect even better performance from technical textiles in the near future.