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Swiss focus on technical yarns

Showcase for sectors such as automotive, aviation, maritime, medical and construction.

11th April 2022

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Switzerland

Transport/​Aerospace, Industrial

At the forthcoming Techtextil in Frankfurt from June 21-24 2022, Swiss Textile Machinery companies will highlight the almost unlimited possibilities for replacing traditional raw materials with high-performance yarns in a wide range of technical applications.

Often tailor-made, these filament yarns go way beyond the conventional idea of ‘textiles’ – finding new uses in sectors such as automotive, aviation, maritime, medical and construction, among many others. Machines and technology from Switzerland are in the forefront of many such developments, producing the yarns which are the basis for these innovations.

Heberlein’s air splicers, for example, have been developed for a wide range of uses with high-strength technical fibres and have no problems splicing aramid fibres of up to 16,100 dtex, carbon up to 30,000 dtex, Dyneema up to 5,500 dtex, and glass up to 4,800 dtex. Using compressed air, the splicers produce a tear-resistant, homogeneous splice of the material without knots.

Retech has the technology to achieve impressive specifications for filament yarns by drawing and stretching fibres. Top heated godet rolls – many customised – are developed for high-performance fibres and temperatures up to 400°C can be achieved. Combining the right settings and wide speed ranges for each specific process results in unique end-products.

Fabric producers of high-end applications must avoid any quality risk. Yarn producers are well aware of this responsibility, so they use precision package winders for technical yarns, developed by Rieter’s subsidiary SSM. Taking yarns from ring twisting bobbins, SSM’s specialist finish winders can produce coarse-count technical yarns up to 50,000 dtex, offering a new level of flexibility and winding quality.

Lifestyle essentials

Many of the technical yarns hidden inside today’s cars have functions such as providing stability with hardly any weight, or absorbing tensile forces at defined elongation. This kind of controlled elongation behaviour arises from the choice of textile material and the special construction of the yarns used.

Such specifications make twisting and cabling machines essential for the automotive industry. Saurer offers ideal machines for the production of technical yarns made from a variety of feed materials in a very wide yarn count range. They are employed in vehicle products such as tyre carcasses, toothed engine belts, seat belts, airbags and lorry tarpaulins.

Technical yarns also play a surprising role in phones and other mobile devices. The touch-sensitivity taken for granted on their screens is largely made possible by twisted glass fibres. Bräcker, part of Rieter’s components business, offers a well-balanced selection of vertical sinter metal rings and nylon travellers for glass fibre twisting, so that mills can achieve the highest levels of productivity and quality.

Future unlimited

Automotive and communication technology are already important industries for Swiss Textile Machinery members, along with well-known technical textiles markets in sectors such as medical, transport and construction. Smart-wear is already noted as a field with significant potential. Naturally, members are constantly investigating other possibilities. Innovative Swiss textile machinery is already applied in energy (batteries), and plastics.

Swiss Textile Machinery members should be the first call for partners seeking consultancy, components and machines, the association says. Members already work closely with industry-oriented, non-profit research institutions, building relationships to explore the unlimited future potential in the expanding world of technical textiles.

The Swiss Textile Machinery textile pavilion will be in Hall 12 at Techtextil 2022.

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