Making decisions in an uncertain trade environment

January 1, 2020

By Marie O’Mahony Editor’s note: The issue of U.S. trade is unusually dynamic and evolving today. The majority of this article represents information available when the speakers presented at IFAI Expo in October 2019.  With current international trade in a persistent state of flux, it’s tempting for the advanced textiles industry to stand by and …

Better together: Indiana Fabric Solutions’ partnership philosophy

Indiana Fabric Solutions’ partnership philosophy is helping both the company and the community grow.  By Holly Eamon Business is booming at Indiana Fabric Solutions, in part because of the owners’ focus on fostering connections within the workforce and the community. Connections, community and communication are key factors in the company’s recent expansion. Four years ago, …

New test methods are needed for medical textiles

December 1, 2019

by Matthew Hardwick, ph.D. The spread of infection is a concern for all of us, but nowhere is it more concerning than in health care. The spread of infection both to and from medical environments is an ever-present problem in hospitals and clinics around the world. Numerous resources are being dedicated to fight the war …

Structured symbolism: ‘Wings over Stinson’ custom architecture

International Tension Structures lifts a community’s sense of pride, one 50-foot, membrane-wrapped steel wing at a time. By Holly Eamon Architecture without a definitive function is not an easy sell. But it’s rarely a regret. “The concept is hard for people to digest, especially early on in a project,” says Jacob Schwartz, director of engineering …

The value and limitations of medical device master files

November 1, 2019

by Elaine Duncan Medical device master files, known as MAFs, have value for textile contract manufacturers and the medical device developer in many ways, but there are some practical limitations. Most medical device manufacturers that incorporate a medical textile into their products will seek a knowledgeable textile contractor who can address the quality system needs …

Geosynthetic applications in flood abatement

Geosynthetics offer cost-effective strategies for mitigating or even eliminating severe flooding in coastal regions.  By Robert M. and George R. Koerner On September 8, 1900, a Category 4 hurricane struck Galveston, Texas, which is situated on the Gulf of Mexico, averaging about 8 feet (2.4 meters) above sea level. The storm created a 15-foot (4.6-meter) …

Committing to e-textile standards

October 1, 2019

The European market influences open international standards for e-textiles.  by Chris Jorgensen In the spring of 2017, companies representing the global e-textiles community formed the IPC D-70 E-Textiles Committee to develop IPC (Association Connecting Electronics Industries®) international standards for their industry. As word spread about the committee and its activities, the committee roster grew to …

Selling the energy efficiency benefits of fabric

Efforts to better market the energy-saving properties of shade products can help consumers and builders make more informed decisions—and move the industry forward. By Holly Eamon It’s easy for people to agree on the need to better regulate temperatures and air quality—and save money—when heating and cooling homes, offices and everything in between.  To the …

Partnerships make a difference in bringing textiles to market

September 1, 2019

Partnerships along the supply chain support new products and applications.  by Marie O’Mahony British entrepreneur Richard Branson once said, “There are no quick wins in business; it takes years to become an overnight success.” This is certainly true for the development of innovative new textiles. Business owners who succeed in their efforts know that establishing …

Protecting professionals with slash-resistant clothing

Slash-resistant clothing can reduce the risk of knife injuries and lacerations, keeping frontline professionals safer.  By Robert Kaiser Throughout history, people have protected themselves with specially designed and constructed garments. From furs and chain mail to leather, metals and high-tech fabric, human beings have creatively employed a range of materials to protect against injury and …