3D Printing Composites Will be a $2 billion Industry Within the Next Decade, Says IDTechEx
PulPac and HS Manufacturing Group cooperates in sustainable Dry Molded Fiber barrier technologies
Toray Opens Resins Technical Center in Europe
NAWAStitch Brings Game-Changing Strength to Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Team’s New Carbon-Fiber Race Wheels
Kordsa presents its new generation composites technologies at the JEC Composites Connect 2021 virtual fair
Packaging redesign could reduce global plastic demand by 20% by 2050
Toray Innovates CO2 Separation Membrane Incorporating Porous Carbon Fiber
US breakthrough for sustainable packaging company PulPac
Highly Breathable Model of LIVMOA Disposable Personal Protective Clothing Proven to Reduce Heat Stress
Toray to Launch Toraysee Bento Box Pre-Washing Cloths that Make Lunch Box Care Immensely Easier
PulPac and Dan-Web partners in airlaid technologies for Dry Molded Fiber
PulPac and Dan-Web partners in airlaid technologies developing standardized machinery for Dry Molded Fiber to replace single-use plastics with affordable fiber-based alternatives The partnership will combine Dan-Web’s extensive know-how, engineering capabilities and technologies in airlaid with the Dry Molded Fiber process. The Dry Molded Fiber standardized defibration unit, called “Mill-to-Web”, will be optimized for packaging and ready for food-grade production. PulPac’s “Dry Molded Fiber” is a patented manufacturing technology for the circular economy – using renewable pulp and cellulose resources to produce low cost, high performance, fiber-based packaging, and single-use products. Dry Molded Fiber gives up to 80-90% lower CO2 footprint at the same or lower cost as plastic. Dan-Web has extensive capabilities in engineering, designing, and building standardized components for defibration as well as customized machines and production lines. Like PulPac, Dan-Web is committed to bring sustainable solutions to the market and the parties will work together to develop machinery, technologies and solutions for the Dry Molded Fiber community. “With close to fifty years’ experience in airlaid and fiber production methods we are proud to be on the frontline in Dry Molded Fiber, a cutting edge production process developed by PulPac, which we believe could be instrumental in fiber’s ability to replace single-use plastics at scale”, says Kurt Sørensen, owner and CEO at Dan-Web. Compared to traditional bespoke airlaid machinery, Dan-Web’s newly developed standardized Mill-to-Web offers a compact and modular defibration unit suitable for many applications and scalable within Dry Molded Fiber. “We are truly impressed with Dan-Web’s immense know-how and expertise in airlaid and fiber production lines and are proud of the empowerment brought to the Dry Molded Fiber community with the introduction of efficient and scalable defibration units, optimized to work with modular production platforms“, says Ove Larsson, founder and Chief Technology Officer at PulPac.
Toray Creates Carbon Fiber Composite Material with Excellent Heat Dissipation that Enables Flexible Thermal Management Design
Toray Industries, Inc., announced today that it has developed a high thermal conductivity technology that lifts the heat-dissipating properties of carbon fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) to that of metals. Applying this technology to CFRP dissipates heat effectively from their sources through thermal conduction paths inside that material. This helps suppress battery degradation in mobility applications while boosting performance in electronic device applications. Common applications for this light, strong, and rigid plastic are aircraft, automobiles, infrastructure components, sporting goods, and electronic devices. There is a great need to boost the heat dissipation of CFRP as a structural material in advanced mobility services collectively called CASE (for connected, autonomous, shared, and electric) to prevent batteries from deteriorating because of heat building up during charging. CFRP is less thermally conductive than aluminum alloys and other metals. This has prompted efforts to enhance heat dissipation by employing external or internal graphite sheets offering excellent thermal conductivity and heat dissipation and diffusion. These sheets are easy to fracture, scatter, and damage, however, compromising the performance of CFRP. Over the years, Toray has used proprietary technology to develop and apply highly rigid porous CFRP forming three-dimensional networks with short carbon fibers. On this occasion, Toray created a heat-conductive layer employing a porous CFRP support that safeguards the graphite sheets. Laminating CFRP prepreg on this thermally conductive layer enabled Toray to attain a thermal conductivity above that of metals, which would be impossible with regular CFRP, without compromising the mechanical properties and quality of that material. Prepreg is a sheet-like intermediate material made by impregnating fibers with resin to reinforce them. Common applications are aircraft fuselages, main and tail wings, and other primary structural components, as well as golf club shafts, fishing rods, tennis racket frames, and other sports equipment. Toray made it possible to determine the thickness and lamination positions of graphite sheets forming thermal conduction paths. This enabled a flexible thermal management design, which controls the paths to release or use heat, for CFRP cooling efficiency and heat diffusion paths. Toray’s breakthrough is a technological solution for efficiently dissipating heat from batteries and electronic circuits without undermining the lightness of CFRP. The company anticipates that CFRP applications employing its technology will include advanced mobility, mobile electronic devices, and wearables demanding lightness and heat dissipation. Toray will keep developing revolutionary materials that transform societies in keeping with its commitment to innovating ideas, technologies, and products that deliver new value.
Hiking gear fabric has cooling effect that may make your next smartwatch more comfortable
As smartwatches become more powerful, they will generate more heat. To prevent burns or rashes, what if a material touching the skin could feel as cool as metal, but also be flexible enough to be worn on the wrist? A team of Purdue University engineers has discovered that a type of fabric typically used for hiking gear has remarkable heat-conducting properties on par with stainless steel, potentially leading to wearable electronics that successfully cool both the device and the wearer’s skin. The material is made of ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene fibers, which are sold commercially under the brand name Dyneema. These polymer-based fabrics are marketed for their high strength, durability and abrasion resistance, and are often used to create body armor, specialty sports gear, ropes and nets. Purdue heat transfer researchers recently investigated other uses for the fabric, namely as a cooling interface between human skin and wearable electronics (see a video about this research on YouTube). Their research is published in Scientific Reports. “This fabric has great flexibility and thermal properties. If you stitch it differently, weave it differently or start blending the polymers with different materials, you could tailor the fabric’s properties to different applications,” said Justin Weibel, a research associate professor in Purdue’s School of Mechanical Engineering. If a material has a high thermal conductivity, that means heat dissipates through the material more easily. There are many heat-dissipation methods for fabrics, from the simple (moisture-wicking); to the intricate (conventional fabrics with heat-conducting strands woven in); to the very complex (liquid-cooled garments worn by astronauts). “Your next smartwatch or virtual reality headset could be more powerful than your current smartphone, so we need to dissipate heat away from the electronic components to keep the wearer comfortable,” said Aaditya Candadai, who recently completed his Ph.D. at Purdue doing research on this project. “These polymer fabrics have amazing thermal properties that can keep these devices cooler and avoid low-degree skin burns.” The team discovered these properties by benchmarking Dyneema against conventional cotton fabrics, as well as polyethylene sheets in rigid non-woven form. They obtained several different commercially manufactured fabric samples and even wove their own samples from raw Dyneema fibers. The researchers tested the fabric samples at the Birck Nanotechnology Center in Purdue’s Discovery Park. The samples went into a small vacuum chamber, with a metal wire laid across the surface as a heat source. Using an infrared microscope, they could generate detailed data about how much heat was being conducted through the fabric’s surface, and in which direction. They found that the Dyneema fabric has 20-30 times higher thermal conductivity than other fabrics, comparable with steel. The team also tested the fabric’s flexibility, which is important for wearable electronics. “There’s a balance; we don’t want to make thermally conductive materials that are so stiff, people won’t be comfortable wearing them,” Candadai said. “These polymer fabrics are in that sweet spot of having good conductivity and good flexibility.” The fabric naturally has these properties with no additional circuity or other equipment, but the researchers also have plans to test how weaving in different materials affects the fabric. “We could integrate other types of fibers – carbon fibers, metal fibers – to achieve different combinations of properties,” said Amy Marconnet, an associate professor of mechanical engineering. As part of his work investigating the heat-conducting properties of fabrics, Candadai won an Art-In-Science award in 2019 for an infrared camera image showing how the fabrics transfer heat. The team’s research was performed within Purdue’s Cooling Technologies Research Center, a graduated National Science Foundation Industry/University Cooperative Research Center with support from industry leaders in thermal materials and electronics.
Snam, RINA and the GIVA Group: the world’s first test with a 30% natural gas/hydrogen blend in steel forging
The world’s first test of a 30% natural gas/hydrogen blend in the forging processes used in industrial steelmaking was held in Rho (province of Milan), at the Forgiatura A. Vienna plant. The trial involved the use of the hydrogen/gas mix to heat the furnaces of the Forgiatura A. Vienna plant and was successfully carried out on site after a series of studies and laboratory tests lasting about a year. The companies involved in the initiative were: Snam, one of the world’s leading energy infrastructure companies and developer and promoter of the project; RINA, a multinational inspection, certification and engineering consultancy, which handled the engineering analyses and laboratory phase; and GIVA Group, a global leader in steelmaking, which made Forgiatura Vienna available for the field test. The blend of methane and hydrogen was supplied by Sapio, an Italian company specialising in the production and marketing of industrial and medical gases. Marco Alverà CEO of Snam commented: “In the medium to long term, hydrogen is in a position to become the solution for decarbonising steelmaking as well as all hard-to-abate industrial sectors that have a fundamental role in our economy. This trial is a preparatory step to the gradual introduction of zero-emission hydrogen, initially blended with natural gas and then in pure form, in certain steelmaking production processes. Snam intends to make its infrastructure, research and expertise available to contribute to the creation of a national hydrogen supply chain and to the achievement of domestic and European climate targets”. Ugo Salerno, Chairman and CEO of Rina added: “This test is the concrete proof that Italy’s hydrogen production chain can significantly contribute to decarbonising complex and energy-intensive industries such as steelmaking. At Rina we are proud to play an active role in the ongoing energy transition, more specifically in such events where we can share our energy and industrial know-how”. Jacopo Longhi Vienna, from the Giva Group said: “Hydrogen can be a great ally to our Group. On one side, increasingly stringent measures on CO2 emissions coupled with our willingness to reduce the environmental impact from our production processes, move us towards finding a solution. On the other, the use of hydrogen could create a driving market for valves and actuators produced by Group’s subsidiaries. This project only marks the beginning of a path we will be involved in for years to come”. The use of the hydrogen and natural gas blend did not require any plant modifications and had no impact either on the equipment used (industrial burners) or on the characteristics of the final heat-treated product. The project’s potential in terms of environmental sustainability and economic competitiveness is significant. It is estimated that the permanent use of a 30% green hydrogen blend, fuelled by renewables, on the total gas consumed by the three GIVA Group’s steel forging plants for its industrial processes would lead to a significant reduction in CO2 emissions in the order of 15,000 tonnes per year, equivalent to 7,500 cars. It would consequently result into CO2 emissions savings amounting to approx. 800,000 euros per year (calculated on the current purchase of certificates) while ensuring the value and integrity of the steel forging manufacturing process and its long-term environmental sustainability. Steel is also the material through which pipelines are made; these pipes will play a fundamental role in transporting hydrogen whereby supplying final customers. The use of hydrogen in hard-to-abate industrial applications such as steelmaking will play a key role in achieving domestic and EU climate neutrality targets by 2050. Looking ahead, green hydrogen is the ideal solution for CO2-free steelmaking and processing. Snam is committed to having its infrastructure hydrogen-ready for transporting increasing amounts of hydrogen and to promoting its use in high-potential industrial sectors, including the iron and steel industry.
Toray : Presents Proven, Technologically Advanced Materials for Urban Air Mobility at "Forum 77 - The Future of Vertical Flight"
Toray Industries (America), Inc., is exhibiting at The Vertical Flight Society's 77th Annual Forum & Technology Display, which begins Monday, May 10, and runs through Friday, May 14. This year the event is being held virtually. The Vertical Flight Society’s annual conference and exhibition focuses on the advancement of vertical flight technology for urban air mobility, including eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) aircrafts. Toray is a sponsor of the event. On display in the Toray Group virtual booth is a portfolio of cutting-edge materials, including carbon fiber composite materials, heat- and chemicals-resistant resin, battery separators, suede-like artiﬁcial leather, and more. A highlight of Toray’s exhibit is its carbon fiber composite materials, which are used for manufacturing an eVTOL structure, including rotor blades and primary structures. An eVTOL vehicle requires proven aerospace materials that have high-strength and are extremely lightweight. Carbon fiber composite materials lighten the weight of the vehicle to minimize the power needed from the batteries. Toray’s high-performance resins, battery separators, and specialty fibers and textiles are also potentially used for eVTOLs. Toray will also present a series of technical briefings on their virtual booth: Selection and Certification of Composite Materials for UAM Tuesday May 11, 2021 2:00 PM – 2:30 PM Presenter: Nate Monroe, Toray Composites America, Inc. Composite Solutions for Transitioning from Prototype to Production Readiness Wednesday May 12, 2021 4:00 PM – 4:30 PM Presenter: Stacy Biel, Toray Advanced Composites Innovative Composite Material Solutions for High Rate UAM Production Thursday May 13, 2021 3:00 PM – 3:30 PM Presenter: DeWayne Howell, Toray Advanced Composites “Toray has a rich legacy in the research, development, and manufacture of advanced materials and experience has shown us that our company’s materials enhance life for society. That’s one reason Toray chose ‘Materials Change Our Lives’ as its slogan,” says Mr. Toshinori Hara, Senior Vice President of Strategic Planning and Development at Toray Industries (America), Inc. “Forum 77 offers an excellent opportunity for Toray to present an array of the world’s highest-quality products for use in the manufacture of urban air mobility aircraft and demonstrate its global leadership.”
New Toray High Heat-Resistant Torayfan Grade Broadens Biaxially Oriented Polypropylene Film Applications
Toray Industries, Inc., announced today that it has created a new grade of its Torayfan® biaxially oriented polypropylene (OPP) film that has world-class thermal resistance and quality level. It can be used in environments up to 120°C. OPP film serves in diverse packaging applications on the strength of its outstanding properties such as excellent mold release, low outgassing, ultraviolet permeability, and low moisture absorption. Toray launched Torayfan in 2018 as an extremely smooth film for production process of optical materials and electronic components. The company set about creating a new Torayfan grade to enhance the quality, smoothness, and thermal resistance of OPP films in response to the performance and functionality developments of the Internet of Things. This new offering significantly reduces outgassing (see glossary note 1) and fisheyes (see glossary note 2) while minimizing the risks of scars and contamination. The company also developed elemental technologies to control the film surface smoothness and thermal resistance. For the new Torayfan grade, these technologies enhanced thermal resistance control in delivering a high-temperature elastic modulus that is up to 80% greater than that of conventional OPP films. These technologies also lifted shrinkage start temperature to 120°C. The numerous industrial uses for this new Torayfan grade include protection and support applications where mold release agent transfers are not allowed, deposition and sputter protection applications where low outgassing is essential, ultraviolet irradiation process protection applications, polarizing plate materials requiring low moisture absorption, and photosensitive materials protection. Toray will expand applications and help enhance the performance and functionality of optical materials and electronic components. Toray will continue to push ahead with efforts to innovate high-performance materials in keeping with its corporate philosophy of contributing to society through the creation of new value with innovative ideas, technologies, and products. Glossary 1. Outgassing is the release of water, additives, and other gasses and vapors from films. 2 Fisheyes are rough protrusions of 50 microns or more originated from degraded polymers.
Toray to Expand Toraysee™ Cleaning Cloth Lineup
Toray Industries, Inc., announced today that it will launch Toraysee™ for Shops and Salons around Japan in late March. The 30cm x 40cm cloth will retail at ¥900 before tax. It will be available through distributors for hair and beauty salons and food and beverage establishments, as well as through appliance stores, e-commerce sites, the Takezawa Online Shop, and Toray shops. The company is bringing out the new offering to help salons, mobile phone sellers, opticians, and other shops offering in-store service to safeguard the health of staff and customers from COVID-19. It has become routine at such establishments since the pandemic began to have people disinfect their hands to prevent contact infections, install partitions to safeguard from airborne droplets, and remove pathogens from objects. While frequently wiping tables, chairs, counters, and other surfaces as part of disinfection and sterilization efforts is also important, stores and salons frequently find this procedure very labor-intensive. Toraysee for Shops and Salons overcomes that challenge because it wipes faster and more effectively than regular cleaning cloths. Toray research found that the cloth can remove 98% of stains when it is dry and 99% when it is wet. The cloth is also economical because it can be washed and reused without compromising performance. The fabric employs a special, quick-drying weave. Toray debuted the Toraysee brand in 1987 as an advanced cloth for wiping eyewear. The company has since expanded the range to include numerous popular cleaning products. It will continue to develop high-value-added merchandise for the Toraysee series in the years ahead.
Toray Creates Ultra-Thin Graphene Dispersion Solution Offering Outstanding Fluidity and Conductivity
Toray Industries, Inc., announced today that it has developed an ultra-thin graphene dispersion solution with excellent fluidity and electrical and thermal conductivity. Applications that could benefit significantly from the solution include battery and wiring materials and paints. Toray will keep pushing ahead with R&D on this breakthrough to accelerate commercialization. Graphene is a sheet-like two-dimensional carbon material and is nanosized and ultra-thin. This advanced functional material is easy to align uniformly, contributing to its excellent conductivity and its barrier performance. Applying graphene or blending with other materials makes additional functions possible. To date, Toray has developed technologies to create very thin, top-quality graphene from inexpensive graphite materials. The issue, however, is that thinner graphene is more likely to aggregate. In contrast, higher concentrations make graphene the more like a clay, impeding fluidity. It is hard to apply and mix graphene in clay form, so it is necessary to dilute and use it in low-concentration solutions. This has masked the inherent benefits of graphene. Toray therefore developed a dispersion technology to control viscosity by adding a unique polymer material that suppresses aggregation from interactions between graphene. The result was a highly concentrated ultra-thin graphene dispersion solution with increased fluidity. The fluidity is excellent, even in high concentrations. The solution is accordingly easy to handle and apply without dilution and more readily demonstrates its outstanding electrical conductivity and other advantages. The high dispersibility and ease of mixing make it simple to blend the solution with other materials. A good application with the new solution would be as a conductive material for lithium-ion batteries. It can be mixed easily with cathode material, with graphene inserted between cathodes to boost conductivity. This approach lowers capacity losses from conductive pathways degrading during repeated charging and discharging, thereby extending battery life. The high-performance batteries of electric vehicles conventionally employ carbon nanotubes as conductive agents. Toray testing confirmed that the new solution offers 50% better battery life than carbon nanotubes. It is also worth noting that applying and drying the solution laminates graphene to form a dense film. One use of the film could be printable electronics wiring that is highly durable and conductive without rusting like metal. Diverse other applications could include mixing the solution with anti-corrosion paints to block water and oxygen permeation that causes rust, thereby enhancing durability. Toray will continue to develop revolutionary materials that transform societies in keeping with its commitment to innovating ideas, technologies, and products that deliver new value.
Toray Develops Energy-Saving, Virus-Removing Ultra-Filtration Membrane
Toray Industries, Inc., announced today that it has developed a new polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) ultrafiltration (UF) membrane with exceptional virus removal rate and high water permeability for water treatment. It can thereby contribute to safe and economical water supplies treated with minimal energy for various applications, from food and beverages through wastewater reuse. Toray will accelerate application testing with a view to commercialization. Toray has been offering PVDF UF membrane, in which the company pursued high strength and high water permeability, for water treatment. In recent years, there has been growing expectations for UF membranes to enhance pathogenic virus removal and water permeability without reducing safety or increasing costs. It has been the difficult problem for years to develop these UF membranes because reducing pore diameters to remove viruses make membrane resistance high, which results in decreasing water permeability. Toray overcame that challenge by improving its technology in following two key respects. 1. Using phase separation control technology to create a uniformly dense structure Toray focused on minimizing coarse voids exceeding 100 nm through which viruses can easily pass. By laminating layers which have homogeneous pore size distribution, Toray create a uniform dense structure without coarse voids. This uniform dense structure made it possible to create thinner dense structure than conventional UF membrane and showed 99.99% removal of the Essherichia coli phage MS2, which has a diameter of around 27 nanometers. 2. Innovative hollow fiber membrane manufacturing technology Dense structure increases resistance and impede water flow. Toray resolved that issue by using a proprietary hollow fiber membrane process technology built on the experience in water treatment and artificial kidney applications to create a thin, uniformly dense structure. Toray achieved excellent virus removal and water permeability (see figures 1 and 2) by increasing porosity in whole membrane except for the uniform dense structure, thus securing more water channels and boosting overall membrane permeability. The Toray Group is leveraging its innovative technologies and advanced materials in its drive to provide universal access to water and air and help restore the environment in keeping with the Toray Group Sustainability Vision and Toray Vision 2030, under which it pursues sustainable and healthy growth. In the years ahead, Toray will do much In keeping with its corporate philosophy of contributing to society by creating new value with innovative ideas, technologies, and products. It will help pave the path toward a recycling-based economy by scaling up, socially implementing, and evaluating its technology over the long term. It also looks to accelerate research into diverse applications extending from food and beverages to reusing wastewater.
New mix could double concrete’s carbon uptake
Concrete is not glamorous. It is the workhorse of building materials: versatile, durable, and almost universally ubiquitous, with 30 billion tons of concrete produced every year. Cement, a component of concrete, produces 8% of the world’s carbon footprint. Looking to lower that percentage, Purdue University engineers have discovered a way to make concrete more sustainable. Their new recipe for concrete has the potential to cut carbon emissions dramatically, creating building blocks for a better world. A team lead by Mirian Velay-Lizancos, an assistant professor of civil engineering at Purdue, proposes adding small amounts of nanoscale titanium dioxide to the cement paste that makes up concrete. The team found that titanium dioxide, a powdery substance known best for its uses in sunscreen, paints, plastics and food preservatives, enhances concrete’s natural ability to sequester carbon dioxide. The team discovered that adding only small amounts of nano-titanium dioxide nearly doubles concrete’s absorption of the problematic greenhouse gas. The study recently appeared in the scientific journal Construction and Building Materials. A YouTube video of the work is available. Velay-Lizancos studies concrete and works to make it a more sustainable building material. Concrete, a variable mixture of water, cement paste, and aggregates such as sand and gravel, was invented millennia ago. Since then, it has changed to suit civilizations’ evolving needs and available materials. The concrete in the Pyramids needed to stand up to heat and wind. The concrete in Roman aqueducts needed to carry millions of gallons of water. Modern concrete needs to be strong, durable, economical, and as sustainable as possible. Manufacturing concrete is an energy and resource-intensive process. Traditional concrete naturally absorbs carbon dioxide — just not very much and not very quickly. “We can’t wait decades for concrete to absorb the carbon dioxide produced in its manufacturing process,” Velay-Lizancos said. “My team is making the concrete itself absorb carbon dioxide faster and in greater volumes. We’re not trying to change the way we use concrete; we’re making the concrete work for us.” The staggering amount of concrete used across the world today—in bridges, in roads and infrastructure, in buildings and monuments, dams and pipe systems—means that any slight improvement in the carbon footprint of concrete could add up to massive effects worldwide. The changes Velay-Lizancos’ team proposes would result in more than a slight change. Her research indicates that including titanium dioxide in the cement mix used to make concrete can double to the amount of carbon dioxide it naturally sequesters in the same amount of time. This effect is in addition to concrete’s well-studied photocatalytic effect, where ultraviolet light from sunshine interacts with concrete to help concrete oxidize harmful nitrogen oxide gases into nitrates. “We are living in a building environment,” Velay-Lizancos said. “There is no doubt that improving the sustainability of concrete, the most used construction material in the world, would mean a giant leap for sustainable development.” Initially, Velay-Lizancos and two of her doctoral students, Carlos Moro and Vito Francioso, were studying how titanium dioxide might interact with cement to make concrete stronger and how curing temperature might affect those interactions. They noticed that some of their concrete samples that included nano-titanium dioxide absorbed carbon dioxide from the surrounding air faster than other samples. Further investigation revealed that adding nano-titanium dioxide to the concrete mix decreased the size of calcium hydroxide molecules, making it vastly more efficient at absorbing carbon dioxide than other cement pastes. The addition accelerated the rate of carbon absorption and increased the total volume of carbon dioxide it can absorb. “I have always wanted to help others, to do something meaningful, something impactful,” Velay-Lizancos said. “This work is a way I can help others. Our research may lead to lower net carbon dioxide emissions. Knowing what you are doing may help stop climate change makes you wake up every day with energy to work harder than the day before.” Her future research will focus on more ways to make concrete more sustainable, more durable and an even better building material for the future.
Toray Employs Proprietary Conjugate Spinning Technology to Develop Fabric
Toray Industries, Inc., announced today that it has developed Camifu™, a polyester filament fabric that combines the softness, smoothness, and comfort of synthetic fibers with the natural feel and random unevenness of traditional Japanese paper. The company will recommend the fabric for an array of apparel uses, from casual medium-weight fabrics for men’s and women’s outerwear to cut-and-sewn apparel, broadening the horizons of upmarket fashions in Japan and overseas markets. The company plans to commercialize Camifu™ from Spring/Summer 2022. Unlike conventional fabrics, Camifu™ can match the Japanese paper features that inspired it. That is because Toray employed NANODESIGN®, its conjugate spinning technology, to develop a flat C cross-sectional shape that delivers a precise arrangement of three different polymers. Using NANODESIGN®, Toray created a special cross-sectional structure in which it has arranged polymers with different heat shrinkage properties in special shapes on the left and right of a flat cross section, with a soluble polymer in the fiber center. Using NANODESIGN®, Toray created a special cross-sectional structure in which it has arranged polymers with different heat shrinkage properties in special shapes on the left and right of a flat cross section, with a soluble polymer in the fiber center. Toray heat treated polymers on the left and right side of the fiber to bend along the fiber. This, coupled with a flat shape, creates a unique twist and stretch. Varying the arrangement and shape of the polymer with adjacent fibers generates different torsional structures for each yarn, resulting in a yarn bundle structure containing complex voids. A yarn bundle structure produces a random unevenness in the fabric texture so it feels like hand-made Japanese paper. Single yarns comprising polymers with different colorations and dyeability cover the fabric without aligning, for attractive fluctuations like those of Japanese paper. Camifu™ is eco-friendly, as one of its polymer is recycled from film scraps. In designing Camifu™, Toray created a hollow structure inside the fiber by placing a soluble polymer within, augmenting yarn bundle voids from filament twisting during relaxing and weight reduction process on textile. This hollow portion imparts a lightness and resilient feel to the fabric. A precisely designed slit keeps functional agents within the fiber, making it possible to incorporate a range of features in the fabric.
Toray Develops Nanotech-Based Odor-Quelling Textile
Toray Industries, Inc., announced today that it has developed Mushon® 4X, a textile that quells the sources of odors. The company applied proprietary nanotechnology in combining several functional processing techniques to deliver odor prevention and elimination, antibacterial, and antioxidant performance. Toray will commercialize this textile in November 2020 for diverse applications needed to control unpleasant odors. They include use in innerwear, dress shirts, denim, chinos, and other regular apparel, as well as futon covers, sheets, and other bedding, and in work, service, medical, and school wear, and other uniforms. Toray targets initial sales of around 200,000 meters in fiscal 2021, increasing to 500,000 meters in fiscal 2025. The company developed MUSHON with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency in 2008 to deodorize ammonia from perspiration. This material has won accolades for its performance in regular innerwear, uniforms, sportswear, and other items. MUSHON 4X augments the deodorizing capabilities MUSHON with odor suppression. A rising number of sweltering summer days has increased the need to control and eliminate perspiration odors. Toray used its Technorama GII and Technorama GIII weather simulation chambers to reproduce a range of temperature and humidity conditions and reconfirm and assess odor causes. This work revealed the oxidative decomposition of sebum as an odor cause. MUSHON 4X overcomes ammonia odors. It prevents stains by stopping sebum from accumulating in fabric. It suppresses the growth of bacteria causing mildewy odors. It also acts as an antioxidant in inhibiting the oxidative decomposition of sebum. Toray’s nanotechnology -based post-finishing treatment made it possible to deliver these benefits without harming washability. This general-use textile is suitable for diverse applications and can combine with sweat-wicking and stretch fabrics to enhance wearer comfort. MUSHON 4X is eco-friendly because it is free from fluorine-based compounds in functional processing. Toray will help materialize comfortable work environments by developing high-performance materials and products for uniforms to help optimize work efficiency, comfort, and safety while minimizing environmental impact.
Nano Film, Meeting the COVID-19 Protective Mask Demands, While Saving Our Planet
Biofast Biotech Originality Study Co., Ltd is an innovative medical gel material supplier for orthopedic products, gel socks, and other fitness and personal care products that aims to elevate the quality of everyday living for humans. Biofast will be launching its new material, Nano-film, to meet the demands for 3D multiple protective masks, face shields, and relative personal protective equipment (PPE) caused by Covid-19. The company also provides another new biodegradable material made of natural plant starch. Mostly used in straws, plates, and cups, it can be completely decomposed by naturally composting for 3–4 months, without producing any toxic substances. As Biofast possesses raw materials at hand, customers are free to discuss their needs and specifications for the product they have in mind. Biofast's Biogel technologies are FDA and CE certified to be safe for the human body. Its innovative medical-grade TPE, TPU, and silicone formula gives products a comfortable feel, and its outstanding processing flexibility and efficiency are perfect for diverse applications while reducing production waste. Top Competitive Advantages of Biogel: • Far-infrared element trace • Fast temperature transfer • Silver ion antibacterial formula “We are leading the industry with our innovative Biogel technologies. With a strong focus on research and development, Biofast has become a composite material application company that can meet different OEM and customization needs," said Chier Chang, board chairman.
A flexible color-changing film inspired by chameleon skin
Chameleons can famously change their colors to camouflage themselves, communicate and regulate their temperature. Scientists have tried to replicate these color-changing properties for stealth technologies, anti-counterfeiting measures and electronic displays, but the materials have limitations. Now, researchers have developed a flexible film that changes color in response to stretching, pressure or humidity. They report their results in ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces. By tensing or relaxing their skin, chameleons can change the way light reflects from guanine crystals under the surface, producing what’s known as structural coloration. These structural colors are different from the pigments that give many other creatures their hues. Scientists have mimicked the crystalline nanostructures of chameleon skin in various color-changing materials, but they’re typically difficult to produce, or they rely on non-renewable petroleum resources. In contrast, cellulose nanocrystals are a renewable material that can self-assemble into a film with iridescent structural colors. However, the films are typically fragile and, unlike chameleon skin, can’t be stretched without breaking. Fei Song, Yu-Zhong Wang and colleagues wanted to develop a highly flexible film made of cellulose nanocrystals that changes color when stretched. To increase the flexibility of cellulose nanocrystals, the researchers added a polymer called PEGDA and used UV light to crosslink it to the rod-shaped nanocrystals, producing films with bright iridescent colors ranging from blue to red, depending on the PEGDA amount. The films were both strong and flexible, stretching up to 39% of their original length before breaking. During stretching, the color of one film gradually changed from red to green, and then changed back when relaxed. According to the researchers, this is the first time that stretching- and relaxing-induced, reversible structural color changes that are brilliant and visible to the naked eye have been realized for cellulose nanocrystal materials. The film also changed color with pressure and humidity, allowing the team to show or hide writing made by an inkless pen. The new bio-based smart skin could find applications in strain sensing, encryption and anti-counterfeiting measures, the researchers say. The authors acknowledge funding from the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Science and Technology Fund for Distinguished Young Scholars of Sichuan Province, the State Key Laboratory of Polymer Materials Engineering and the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities.
Oligo(3-methoxythiophene)s as Water-Soluble Dyes for Highly Lustrous Gold- and Bronze-like Metal-Effect Coatings and Printings
Lustrous metallic paints are used to enhance the beauty of many products, such as home decorations, cars and artwork. But most of these pigments owe their sheen to flakes of aluminum, copper, zinc or other metals, which have drawbacks. Now, researchers reporting in ACS Omega have developed organic-only dyes that can form films resembling gold or bronze, without the need for metals. In paints, metal flakes tend to settle to the bottom of the can, requiring regular stirring during use and storage. Multiple coats of metallic paint are often needed to provide good coverage, which adds weight to the object being painted. Also, when used in ink-jet printers, metallic pigments can clog ink nozzles. For these and other reasons, researchers are trying to develop nonmetallic, organic paints with metal-like luster. But so far, few candidates have displayed all of the desired qualities of solubility in solvents, good film-forming properties and excellent stability over time. Katsuyoshi Hoshino and colleagues from Chiba University in Japan recently introduced a perchlorate-doped 3-methoxythiophene oligomer that checked all of these boxes, but it had to be dissolved in solvents that are considered unsafe for painters. To develop an industrially acceptable metal-effect dye, the researchers wanted to make and test chloride-doped 3-methoxythiophene oligomers. The team made two different versions of the chloride-doped oligomers, which, unlike their previously reported perchlorate-doped counterpart, dissolved in water. They coated glass plates with solutions of the new dyes and allowed them to dry. The two chloride-doped oligomers produced lustrous gold- or bronze-like films, respectively, but they each had a non-glossy dark stain, which resembled a coffee ring stain, near the center. Although more research is needed to determine how to prevent this stain from forming, both films had higher reflectance than the one made by the perchlorate-doped oligomer. The paints are soluble in water but can be made water-resistant by dehydration, which makes their industrial implementation feasible. The new dyes could be used in commercial ink-jet printers, and they also might someday be implemented in organic electronic systems, the researchers say. The authors acknowledge funding from the Ogasawara Foundation for the Promotion of Science & Engineering and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science KAKENHI program.
World’s first successful practical test use of Toray’s 100 % VOC-Free Waterless EB Offset Printing Technology in Europe
Toray Industries, Inc., announced today that its technology for waterless electron beam (EB) offset printing has been applied successfully for the first time on flexible packaging. The technology is free of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Spain’s SP Group, a European manufacturer of flexible retail food packaging, completed a series of tests to print retort pouches with this technology. The tests demonstrated the key benefits of this innovative printing technology. These include maximum sustainability and resource conservation and optimal compliance with health and anti-pollution standards. Another advantage is exceptional print quality, with sharper, higher resolution images that comply with food contact materials regulations. The printing industry should accordingly enjoy significant savings and efficiency gains over the medium term. The testing success represents a milestone in Toray’s R&D into waterless printing technology, which started in the early 1970s. Such technology has helped reduce VOC emissions for more than 40 years. Toray began developing printing technology that is completely free of these chemicals in 2015. The application that the SP Group created for its test on the COMEXI CI8 offset press employed water-washable EB ink from Toray. Francisco Bernal, CEO of SP Group, emphasizes that, “Using such innovative technologies as waterless EB offset, VOC-free printing has matched our core corporate principles of sustainability while maximizing quality. Testing with Toray technology embodied SP Group’s pioneering spirit and ongoing commitment to optimization.” Toray’s technology offers several advantages. Waterless offset printing does not require dampening water, so VOC emissions are 60% to 80% lower than with wet processes. The special ink and EB curing-based process eliminate the need for solvents. Liquids that clean printing units are free of organic solvents, for zero VOC consumption in cleaning processes. Finally, Toray could achieve 100% VOC-free in all printing processes. Toray will continue to innovate materials and processes to lift living standards and contribute to sustainable social progress.
Toray Carbon Fiber and Thermoplastic Pellet Advances Poised to Enhance Molded Product Cost Performances
Toray Industries, Inc., announced today that it has created a high tensile modulus carbon fiber and thermoplastic pellets that are ideal for injection molding employing that fiber. The pellets will enable the efficient production of complex, rigid parts that are also light, thereby lowering environmental impact. These advances could greatly enhance cost performance. Toray will push ahead with research and development to commercialize the fiber and pellets within the next three years. Toray markets the TORAYCA® T series of high-strength carbon fibers for pressure vessel, automotive, and other industrial applications, as well as for aerospace. In 2014, it launched the TORAYCA T1100G carbon fiber, which offers a world-leading tensile strength of 7.0 GPa and a tensile modulus of elasticity of 320 GPa. In 2018, the company further expanded the potential of carbon fiber for high-end sports equipment and aerospace structural materials by commercializing TORAYCA M40X. This offering employs proprietary nano-level fiber structure control technology to balance a high compression strength and a tensile strength of 5.7 GPa, with a tensile modulus of 377 GPa. The fiber’s diameter of 5 microns constrains productivity, however, making costs an issue. In the development effort announced today, Toray tackled that challenge by pursuing further advances with its TORAYCA MX series control technology to create 7-micron fibers with uniform internal structures. The result was a fiber with a tensile modulus of elasticity of 390 GPa, around 70% higher than the standard level of TORAYCA series offerings for industrial applications, delivering a much better cost performance. TORAYCA thermoplastic pellets incorporating the newly developed carbon fibers maintain longer fibers than conventional high tensile modulus offerings after molding processes. The pellets can thus deliver attain a tensile modulus of 41 GPa. That is comparable to the 45 GPa of magnesium alloys. At the same time pellets have a specific gravity of just 1.4, against the 1.8 of magnesium alloy. Using these pellets to make complex parts through injection molding processes would significantly enhance productivity and contribute much to lightening parts. Toray looks to cultivate diverse applications for its advanced pellets, including for parts in lightweight next-generation automobiles and in industry in general.