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Milliken companies launch FR AR knit fabrics collection

The two Milliken owned category leaders, Westex and Polartec, have collaborated to produce flame resistant/arc-rated knits certified for the job with overtime comfort.

2nd December 2020

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Spartanburg, SC, USA


Two Milliken textiles businesses, Westex, a leader in dual-hazard protective textiles, and Polartec, a premium provider of innovative and sustainable textile solutions, have announced a new collection of flame-resistant (FR), arc-rated (AR) knit fabrics.

Known as the Polartec FR Collection, the collection introduces three unique Polartec fabric constructions engineered with Westex FR/AR fabric technology that provides trusted thermal hazard protection. The products span shirting, insulation and weather resistance fabrics that meet or exceed worldwide protection standards for even the most demanding industries, including oil and gas, electrical, construction, and military use.

“It’s a collaboration that draws on the best of both brands, with Westex contributing its expertise in FR/AR fabric engineering and design and Polartec as an expert in performance fabric constructions,” comments Michael Langley, vice president of marketing and sales for Westex. “Incorporating our engineered FR technology—technology we have expanded and refined over the course of our 60-year history—into performance knits and fleeces that are market leaders in their own right is a win-win for our customers.”

“With this Westex collaboration, we’re bringing the pinnacle of outdoor and athletic performance fabrics into the PPE space,” adds Polartec President Steve Layton. “The products that millions of people wear hiking, mountain climbing, and athletic training now have the added benefit of uncompromising FR/AR protection thanks to Westex’s technology. This is a game-changer for workers everywhere.”

The Polartec FR Collection knits patented tri-blend yarn into flame-resistant, temperature-regulating fabrics—meaning dual-hazard thermal protection is engineered directly into the fibre and is guaranteed for the life of the garment, according to Westex. The collection comprises three individual lines:

Polartec Power Dry FR

Offering ‘superior next-to-skin moisture management’, Polartec Power Dry FR uses bi-component knit to deliver mechanical wicking action and high breathability for fast drying times and efficient, comfortable performance in a shirting fabric. Power Dry FR comes in two weights: a 4.5oz jersey knit base layer certified to NFPA 2112 and offering NFPA 70E Category 1 protection, and a 6.4oz pique knit certified to NFPA 2112 and offering NFPA 70E Category 2 protection.

Polartec Power Grid FR

Utilizing Polartec’s famous grid construction, Polartec Power Grid FR provides superior warmth without weight, minimal bulk and the combined ability to both trap warm air and quickly dump excess heat during high exertion, the company says. Power Grid FR is a 9.6oz jersey knit compliant with NFPA 2112. It also offers NFPA 70E Category 2 protection and meets CSA Z96 and ANSI 107. The fabric is ideal for lightweight jackets and balaclavas.

Polartec Wind Pro FR

Answering the call for weather-resistant FR fabric, Polartec Wind Pro FR is four times more wind resistant than classic fleece to reduce wind chill and repel moisture while maintaining breathability and comfort. Suitable for jackets, the 11.6oz jersey/velour Wind Pro FR is NFPA 2112-certified, provides NFPA 70E Category 2 protection and meets ANSI 107.

For more than 60 years, Westex has been a leader in creating fabrics that offer superior dual-hazard protection for a wide range of applications. Polartec, acquired by Milliken & Company in 2019, is a frontrunner in premium and sustainable performance textiles for the apparel market.

Polartec FR Collection

Polartec Website

Milliken Website

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