Soft robotics and shape memory alloys

August 1, 2019

Shape memory alloys are a fit with textile technologies. by Janet Preus What makes a material robotic? According to Brad Holschuh, Ph.D., assistant professor of wearable technology and apparel design in the College of Design at the University of Minnesota (UMN), the simplest explanation is that it’s a synthetic product with mechanical actuation that can …

Channeling nature through fabric at Allianz Field

Dramatic Allianz Field soccer stadium in Minnesota takes its cues from Lake Superior and aurora borealis. By Bruce N. Wright, AIA Soccer is an internationally loved sport for many reasons, but one draw has to be the fluid physicality of the athletes. The new Allianz Field soccer stadium in St. Paul, Minn., reflects this dynamic …

E-textiles in health monitoring

July 1, 2019

Progress, potential and challenges for next-generation applications.  by Debra Cobb Among the many benefits promised by the smart fabric revolution has been the “consumerization of health care.” Wearables are enabling the remote monitoring of a wide range of chronic medical conditions, from diabetes, high blood pressure and congestive heart failure (CHF) to symptoms of disease, …

Creativity CUBED

Electra’s inventive flat-top temporary fabric structure helps it keep pace with Dubai’s fast-evolving event industry. By Holly Eamon In a world where customers increasingly expect their demands to be met instantaneously, companies that don’t prioritize active listening—or engagement—risk being left behind. Based in the competitive market of Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE), event and exhibition …

Sustainable infrastructure and construction textiles

June 1, 2019

Infrastructure and construction textiles succeed with a focus on sustainable alternatives. By Seshadri Ramkumar and Marie O’Mahony  Today’s advanced textiles offer new forms for use in infrastructure projects and in building design and construction. These “hidden” textiles may be found in small-scale applications such as home furnishings as well as in huge projects such as …

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Worth the weight: an invention designed to help one child transformed into a company primed to help everyone

By Holly Eamon Whether they’re being touted by a celebrity, promoted by major retailers or recommended by a friend, weighted blankets are the latest must-have household item. But as their transformative capabilities are increasingly introduced to and embraced by medical patients and professionals, their relevance is poised to long outlive similar fads—thanks to the determination …

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Wholesale Shade introduces Shade Sail University

May 10, 2019

Wholesale Shade, a premier shade sail fabricator, has developed a comprehensive guide for the shade sail industry. Covering design, selling, installation and more, this guide is a must-have for anyone looking to get into the shade business or to train new employees. It includes standard industry forms and a glossary of terms.  A redesigned website …

The protective textiles market

May 1, 2019

Advanced textiles sector participants can benefit from strong growth predictions.  by Seshadri Ramkumar The protective textiles sector is expected to grow at an annual rate of 4 percent, according to a recent report by Leeds, U.K.-based WTiN Intelligence Service. Earlier estimates by other market survey agencies, such as Grand View Research, estimated the annual growth …

Advice for understanding IP law

April 23, 2019

Advice for innovators from innovators. by Janet Preus Editor’s note: Select entrepreneurs were asked to answer questions about intellectual property (IP) law and their experiences with it. Those interviewed are at various stages in their careers. Questions asked: What do you wish you had known early on when you were first dealing with IP law/patent …

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Sustainable sourcing

April 1, 2019

Following her recent podcast Sustainable Textile Sourcing for Performance Textiles in Munich, I caught up with Anne-Marie van Hoof, owner and creative director at 4-Options Studio in The Netherlands, to get her take on what she sees as driving sustainability within the industry now and into the future. Fiber credentials The 4-Options Studio offers a …