Covestro’s Insqin waterborne polyurethane technology has developed a new process that combines with new products in its Impranil range to enable significant reduction in the manufacturing cost of PU textiles and a broader range of fashionable material effects.
In accordance with an increasing demand for sustainable textile materials, Insqin waterborne polyurethane technology enables a new level of material sustainability for PU-coated fabrics, key materials for apparel and footwear, furniture and diverse other industries. By enabling solvent-free material manufacturing processes, the technology brings significant improvement to worker safety, eliminates risks of environmental pollution and drastically reduces the consumption of water and energy, Covestro said.
PU base materials are essential intermediates in the manufacture of many synthetic textile materials, particularly those used in the fashion industry, since they permit a high level of production flexibility that is of critical importance in this industry, the company noted. The new technology developed using Insqin shows the same high performance, especially softness, of materials manufactured using solvent-based products.
It can also be embossed directly, bringing about a significant reduction in manufacturing costs and permitting manufacturers to bring a wide range of surface effects to the material. Manufacturers can adopt this new achievement utilizing existing production lines, without need for a major investment.
“We are particularly proud of this new breakthrough in the technology for base material manufacture,” said Nick Smith, global head of Textile Coatings at Covestro, headquartered in Leverkusen, Germany. “It will further increase the appeal of our waterborne PU material to the textiles industry that is searching for sustainable materials. It is a wonderful example of a combined development of both new products and textile coating application technology, that we carried out in close concert with key customers.”
Covestro has also launched new PU dispersions that further broaden the application possibilities of waterborne PU. The new products focus on the creation of new material effects and on new performance levels.
Newly launched Impranil CIL enables the production of fine nubuck material, a popular material effect that until now has posed a significant challenge for waterborne chemistry. Similarly, Impranil DLI is a new PU dispersion designed for wrinkle or fold recovery in the coated material, important for apparel manufacturing.
With a renewable content that reaches as high as 65 percent, Impranil eco contributes to a further reduction of carbon dioxide emissions. The first products in the series have been designed for applications in fashion apparel, accessories and footwear, and more products are being developed for other uses.
With 2015 sales of 12.1 billion euros, or $13.4 billion at current exchange, Covestro is among the world’s largest polymer companies. Covestro, formerly Bayer MaterialScience, has 30 production sites around the globe and employs about 15,800 people worldwide.