Mathematics + design = visual drama

March 1, 2017

The science and art of mathematics comes together dramatically in the redesigned Mathematics: The Winton Gallery at London’s Science Museum. A vision of the late architect Zaha Hadid, whose Zaha Hadid Architects created the design in collaboration with curator David Rooney, the exhibit showcases 400 years of mathematics history from the renaissance to the present …

From custom to customer

Manufacturing USA—the new name for the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation—has established nine manufacturing innovation institutes, with six more planned in 2017. These public–private partnerships each have distinct technology focus areas but work towards a common goal: to secure America’s future through manufacturing innovation, education and collaboration. The mission of the Advanced Functional Fabrics of …

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Building markets in Ukraine

Ukraine plans to attract $300 million for the development of domestic technical textiles and nonwovens industries. According to recent statements from the Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers, Ukraine plans to attract up to $300 million USD worth of investments for the development of the domestic technical textiles and nonwovens industries over the next several years. This …

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Game on

A competitive mind-set is what manufacturers of high-tech fabrics and fabric products say is powering demand for their high-performance solutions.  When you think about high-tech sports and recreation products designed to help athletes hone the competitive edge, equipment rather than fabric likely springs to mind first, but this reaction is behind the times—fabrics have evolved to …

Attention-getting activewear

Shockwave is Top Value Fabrics’ newest addition to its line of polyester fabrics for active wear applications. The 92/8 Polyester Spandex Space Dye Jersey Fabric is soft to the touch and allows for good lateral movement and comfortable wear. Popular applications include yoga apparel, hoodies, sports bras, leggings, headwear and athleisure wear. Top Value Fabrics …

Decorative fabrics

The Outline Collection from KnollTextiles is a textiles and wallcovering collection that explores line work, geometry and color in high-performance products. Highlights include Nature Walk, a polyurethane upholstery by designer Ruth Adler Schnee, high-performance 100 percent woven polyethylene wallcoverings Alias II and Asterisk II, and digitally printed privacy fabric with integrated mesh for easy maintenance. …

Keeping customers covered

Shane Cossette is the chief operating officer of T.R.S. Industries, a Fargo, N.D.-based manufacturer and servicer of tarps and tarp systems. A business that began in Cossette’s grandparents’ garage in 1983, T.R.S. Industries has since grown into a company that employs 47 workers in a location just shy of 70,000 square feet. Here, Cossette shares …

Keeping up with carbon

Demand for carbon fiber stresses market ability to provide it,  but costs and efficiences are expected to improve. Although carbon fiber as a commodity has been around since the late 1960s, only in the past 10 years can there truly be considered a dynamic market of real substance with steady growth potential. Others in the …

Bring it on

Jacob Schwartz navigates the design and construction process by leveraging group strengths, examining all options and committing to long-term solutions for clients. “Without exception, the more—and earlier—we are engaged in the design process, the more successful the fabric application becomes,” says Jacob Schwartz, owner and director of engineering and construction for International Tension Structures (ITS), Phoenix, …

Light control

Phifer has expanded its SheerWeave collection to include additional blackout and light-filtering interior sun control fabric options. Style 7600 blackout has a soft, acrylic foamed backing for total light blockage. Style 7650 is a complementary range that uses the face fabric of Style 7600, providing privacy while allowing for natural light. The new fabrics are …

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Shade with character

Fabricators bring together innovative and classic elements to protect their boating customers from the sun’s harmful rays. Whether permanent or removable, shading on boats has a big job to fulfill: protecting the crew and passengers from the sun while creating a comfortable environment. And boat owners are becoming more knowledgeable about the health dangers that …

Stress-free removable film

DPF 510 Removable is a short-term promotional removable film available in a Gloss (DPF 510GTR) and Matte (DPF 510MTR) finish. It features a two-sided, lay-flat poly coated liner that provides a consistent and vibrant print quality compatible with a variety of print systems including Eco-Solvent, Solvent and Latex. DPF 510 Removable is recommended for short-term …

Stay dry in the rain

MINOTECH™ is a water-repellent outerwear material inspired by the design of straw raincoats made in ancient Japan. Due to the material’s micro-garter structure, small convex bulges help reduce horizontal surface tension to allow raindrops to slip off the surface in a vertical direction. With its non-laminated structure, MINOTECH has high moisture permeability that allows sweat …

Shapeshifting inflatables

The concept of inflatables is certainly not new; they’re available in every size, shape and color imaginable. But what is new is a process to create inflatables that can fold themselves into complex shapes. MIT Media Lab’s Tangible Media Group has introduced aeroMorph, inflatable structures that have the capacity to fold like Origami all on …

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The 2017 State of the Industry: Part 2

The slow economic recovery after the Great Recession has made kick-starting growth in the specialty fabrics industry a continuing challenge. Five of the six key markets covered in Part 2 of this report showed growth in 2016, which is expected to continue in 2017. (The military market was down 6 percent, and is expected to …

Minimal gear, maximum adventure

The freedom of the open road. It means getting on your motorcycle and going, not worrying about where or when to stop. The equipment a biker takes along can make all the difference. That’s the idea behind the Bivouac tent designed by Swiss-based Expose, a group of outdoor and motorcycle enthusiasts who prefer to travel …

New colors for shade solutions

Vicar International is stocking Cooltra Shade in Desert Tan, Aqua Blue, Black and Forest Green. Manufactured with 100 percent high density polyethylene warp knitted shade fabrics, Cooltra Shade is lightweight, durable and can provide shade for up to 95 percent UV coverage. The mesh is manufactured with a pre-heat set process for added strength and …

Fashion-forward exhibit: the personal touch

London’s NOW Gallery at Greenwich Peninsula, a public exhibition space for contemporary art and design, was recently transformed into a sea of tulle by hip young fashion designer Mary Goddard. Known for designing flamboyant yet feminine clothing in unlikely materials, Goddard created oversized dresses using about 1300 feet of tulle in vibrant colors and suspended …

Applying the perfect sunscreen

The Musee de L’Homme, a museum of anthropology in Paris, recently reopened its doors after being shuttered for a six-year renovation. One of the goals for the building, which is listed as a historical monument, was to bring space and light into its halls. The project included the creation of the Gallery of Mankind, a …

Local color, in style

It took big ideas and creativity to transform a 45,000-square-foot space into Rebel, Toronto’s hottest new nightclub. Local designer Studio Munge was up to the challenge, mixing bold colors and sensual patterns in multiple layers to create a unique, changing environment that breaks up the two-story space into distinctively themed gathering spaces. Eventscape, a Toronto-based …

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New technology from Japan

On the future of Japanese high-performance and high-function fibers. IFAI Japan, in collaboration with IFAI, conducted a Japan Technical Seminar at IFAI Expo 2016 in Charlotte, N.C., to introduce new technologies and ideas. The Japan Chemical Fibers Association (JCFA), which consists of members of world-leading chemical fiber manufacturers (including Teijin Ltd., Toray Industries, Kuraray, Co. …

Fewer, faster, finer

How U.S. manufacturers can adapt to changing expectations of customers. Back in 2007, Trans-Tex LLC, based in Cranston, R.I., was struggling to survive. Management quickly concluded that the company, a dye sublimation heat transfer printer of narrow web fabric, could not compete against overseas competition by attacking their strengths. Those competitor strengths included manufacturing long …