The Dyneema Project has commissioned technical apparel designer Conroy Nachtigall to develop what it calls the “alpine jacket of tomorrow” using Dyneema Composite Fabric.
Calling it the “strongest and lightest ever made,” Dyneema has also created a short documentary titled “Sending It” covering the response when the jacket was tried by some well-known experts living in Canadian extreme sports capital Squamish.
Proven to be 15 times stronger than steel, but able to float on water, Dyneema is considered the world’s strongest fiber and has long been used to moor oil rigs, stop bullets and repair human ligaments.
As a fabric component, Dyneema technology was first applied to sailcloth for the winning yacht of America’s Cup 1992. Since then, Dyneema Composite Fabrics have been engineered with a range of properties, including breathability, colors, solar reflectivity, various sensor and telecommunication abilities and for applications such as airships, ultralight hiking equipment, heart valves and flexible circuitry.
Currently, Dyneema Composite Fabrics is spearheading a revolution in the performance sports apparel industry.
“Dyneema Composite Fabrics is a precise high-tech material, yet still looks unfinished and raw due to its signature crinkly look,” said Swiss snowboarder Romain de Marchi. “It’s a fabric, but isn’t a fabric — bonded instead of woven, super lightweight yet supertough. Dyneema shifts perceptions and that’s what I try to do with apparel: to have the wearer shift their idea of what they can do based on what they’re wearing.”
When Nachtigall’s resulting prototype is taken for first inspection to Squamish, British Columbia, the extreme alpine sports hub of Canada — the response was strong.
“Being out on the mountains, you’re at mercy of nature, so this durability factor is huge when you’re looking for a jacket,” said skier Dana Flahr.
Snowboard photographer Phil Tifo said, “It feels like you’re not wearing anything, and I still feel warm.”
The Dyneema Project brings together cutting-edge brands and state-of-the-art mills to create fabrics and performance-inspired apparel, footwear and accessories that are stronger, lighter, smarter and more durable and comfortable than anything currently available.
Dyneema is produced in Heerlen, Holland; Greenville, N.C., and Mesa, Ariz.