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Tonello scoops top prize at ITMA Future Materials Awards 2015

The second edition of the annual awards saw a host of companies and research institutes honoured for their cutting-edge products, processes and treatments.

20th November 2015

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Milan

Sports/​Outdoor, Protective, Medical/Hygiene, Interiors, Sustainable, Clothing/​Footwear

Covestro AG, a leading supplier of high-tech polymers, has scooped two awards and Tonello, a designer and manufacturer of garment finishing technologies, took the top prize of Launch of the Year at the ITMA Future Materials Awards 2015, held in Milan on 16 November during the leading textiles machinery exhibition, ITMA 2015.

Celebrating the best innovations in the technical textile industry, this second edition of the annual awards, which is hosted by WTiN, was attended by more than 200 guests and saw a host of leading companies and research institutes honoured for their cutting-edge products, processes and treatments.

Tonello’s victory was in recognition of its Water Brush process, which uses a chemical-free approach to achieve an authentic vintage look on jeans. With Water Brush operators need no protection and there is no impact on either the environment or the workplace, according to the manufacturer.

Innovations and developments

“Hosting the Future Materials Awards alongside ITMA 2015, when the textiles world has come together here in Milan to showcase innovations and developments across the industry, was an opportunity not to be missed,” commented WTiN Managing Director Mark Jarvis.

“The technical textiles segment is a key driver of this textiles innovation movement, and we’ve seen a host of fantastic examples of what it’s possible to achieve in the world of future textiles here tonight.”

Sustainable Process

Covestro (formerly Bayer MaterialScience) won the Innovator of the Year prize, and tied with Separex on Sustainable Process. Both Covestro’s awards were for its development of Impranil eco, a new class of waterborne polyurethane dispersions for textile coating which comprises up to 65% renewable resources.

Separex, a French SME specialising in sustainable high pressure carbon dioxide technologies, picked up the Sustainable Process award for its approach to the use of CO2. Separex has developed a reverse dyeing process, which allows discolouration of waste polyester textiles, allowing the production of higher quality recycled textiles.

Sports Textiles

There was another tie, in the category of Sports Textiles, where Coolcore and Europlasma shared the plaudits for their innovations. Coolcore was picked for its performance fabrics for athletic and everyday apparel, developed without the use of added chemicals or topical agents.

Europlasma received the nod for its PlasmaGuard technology, a high-tech process which uses no water and a minimum of energy and chemicals.

Most Innovative Company

Awards for Most Innovative Company were split across Large, Medium and Small Companies, with Milliken & Company, Polartec and TissueGen Inc respectively picking up the trophies in each of these categories.

MultiFun was named Best Start-Up Company, thanks to its innovation in multifunctional fibre composite materials and associated technologies, including end-to-end hardware, and analysis, control and design software.

Other innovations

In the Medical Textiles category, Hohenstein Institute received the award for its Artus innovation, a textile-based artificial uterus that actively provides premature babies in neonatal incubators with womb-like motions and the mother’s voice and heartbeat.

CeNTI (Centre for Nanotechnology and Smart Materials) took the winner’s prize in Mobile Textiles. And there were awards for Torcitura Padana in Home Textiles, ViDi Systems in Industrial Textiles, LeMur S.p.A. in Protective Textiles and Bonded Logic in Sustainable Textiles.

In building and construction, Moya Power was awarded for Moya sheets, lightweight and flexible fabrics with filaments that generate electricity when moved by the wind. In Clothing, Viz Reflective scooped the gong for VizLite DT, which combines retro-reflective and phosphorescent technologies that illuminate fabrics without the need for LED lights or an external power source.

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