Jani Lehmonen, Atsushi Tanaka, Ali Harlin, Jukka Ketoja
VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd
The production of novel fashion and technical textiles by foam forming requires enhancements in the handling of long fibres in the process. These kinds of studies have been carried out mainly at laboratory scale. VTT is currently up-scaling the required technology to handle long fibres from laboratory to semi-pilot scale. The developed next-generation fibre foam research environment will be located at VTT Jyväskylä.
The design speed is up 300 – 400 m/s, the maximum web width is 60 mm, and the environment contains a drying solution enabling the production of a roll of dried web for further analysis. Both single and multi-layered structures can be demonstrated. There is a separate device for hydroentanglement of the produced structures.
The new environment enables studies of versatile applications from multi-layered textile applications to thick (upto 10 mm) and bulky web structures. Multi-layered structures can be functional leading to web materials with novel properties. Foam forming technology leads to superior formation enabling the use of wider scale of fibre materials and tailored product properties. Furthermore, increased forming consistency enhances water savings compared to current dilute processes.