Consumer demand, market challenges, and the microbe-fighting power of zinc ions were among the topics discussed today at the Techtextil North America 2021 Symposium session “High-Performance Fibers: From Concept to Market.”
In his talk “Innovation Is Not Linear,” Kevin Urman, Ph.D., Ascend Performance Materials’ fibers technology director, highlighted how the company’s Acteev® technology grew from a small application experiment to a booming anti-odor textile platform.
“Just a few years ago, the antimicrobial textile market was limited to a few options, which due to colorfastness and sustainability shortcomings were not meeting market demand,” Dr. Urman said. “We found that customers are increasingly eager for clothing and gear made with natural active ingredients such as zinc that is long-lasting and resistant to odor and mildew.”
Proud recipient of a 2021 Outdoor Retailer Innovation Award, Acteev locks the environmentally safe antimicrobial protection of zinc ions within superior nylon 6,6, creating yarns and fabrics that naturally combat odor- and mildew-causing bacteria, mold and fungi. The technology protects textiles – from intimates to outerwear to sleeping bags and more – using one of nature’s own elements.
Plus, unlike chemical applications that are coated or sprayed on, Acteev does not rely on any post-production treatment or after-market process. Instead, Acteev’s zinc ions are embedded within the matrix of the molecule, providing protection throughout the life of the product. This means Acteev textiles require less water in the manufacturing process while ensuring they remain as effective as day one.
The Techtextil North America Symposium allows attendees to learn from industry leaders and subject matter experts as they discuss some of the most pivotal advancements in research and technology and shed light on the current global economic state and its effects across industries. The show’s theme this year is “Accelerating Technology” and aims to highlight the textile industry’s high level of innovation and contribution to the global supply chain through advanced technology.