THAILAND: Textile industry to develop array of products

BANGKOK: The Thailand Textile Institute (THI) in collaboration with the National Nanotechnology centre (NNC) will create  innovative technology for use in new products and processes.

“THI” Executive director Virat Tandaechanurat said the partnership would help the institute widen its technology development for commercial use and will also allow local textile manufacturers to develop a broader variety of products.

THI and NNC will together create innovative technology to be used in the textiles industry.

The two organisations will help to set up the direction of textile-technology development to match market demand. The institute is developing technology that would give conventional textiles new functions and new properties.

Functional textile development will be used as an anti-bacterial feature to fabrics. Some local textile manufacturers have adopted nanotechnology, whereby silver nano particles are used to coat the fabric, giving the clothes anti-bacterial protection. This is one way in which manufacturers can improve the quality of their products and add value.

Silver, for example, has a power to sterilise and deodorise, so when it's used with clothes it can protect the wearer from germs. Titanium dioxide has anti-bacterial and self-cleaning properties, helping clothes stay clean, even if worn for a long time. Meanwhile, zinc oxide, which can kill microbes and bacteria, could be used to develop a hygienic fabric.

The institute also believes that functional textiles, which have commercial potential, include those coming with wrinkle-free, water-resistant, self-cleaning, odour-free and fire-resistant features. It plans to carry out research on how to ensure the textiles maintain their new features for as long as possible.

The industry needs to find out how to keep nano particles attached to the textile fibres longer.

"If the textiles have the new features from the start of the process, the added properties will last longer," Virat Tandaechanurat said.

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Added: June 30, 2007 Source: Agencies
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