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Marcel Alberts
Marcel Alberts
Managing Director

Interview with Marcel Alberts

Our technology covers every filament and coats each one of them

Coating at a fibre level is a practice not usually seen in the high-performance fibres industry, despite this technology having immense advantages. European high-performance fibres supplier, EuroFibers BV developed and implemented this technology in its products for better performance last year, and is now in an expansion mode. Marcel Alberts, managing director of Eurofibers talks to Fibre2Fashion about the scope this technology holds in the industry, and their plans to integrate this technology in the products.

TT: Please shed some light on coating technology, for the uninitiated.

Eurofibers is a supplier of high-performance fibres for the technical textiles industry. We have a very clear focus on high-performance fibres like Dyneema, Twaron, Technora, Vectran and Zylon. We have been around for five years. We are headquartered in the Netherlands, and have a production location in the Czech Republic. We supply high-performance fibres by integrating various technologies into the fibres like twisting, plying, coating and chopping. The coating technology is the latest addition to our range of products. About two years ago, we started working on what we now call the Prisma coating technology. The idea is to enhance the properties of highperformance fibres by means of coating technology. For instance, the UV resistance of our product, Vectran is not particularly good. By using the coating technology, we can shield the product against UV degradation, i.e. losing of strength under direct sunlight.

TT: How does this technology work?

Coating of fabric is well-known. Many companies do that. But what we do is-we apply coating technology at the fibre level itself. We have yarn, which we run through a coating bath. We have a squeeze roll to get rid of the excess amount of coating. We dry the coating in an oven, and then the Sahm winders wind the yarn on bobbins again. And, that is the product we sell. The core of our technology is more in coating formulation. The coating formulation is more or less tailored to serve the needs of customers.

TT: This is not a patented technology, is it?

It is specifically not a patent, because if it is, everybody can read it and everybody can do it. So, we have decided to protect it by the means of trade secrets. We sign a very strict confidentiality agreement with all our employees that they cannot reveal any details.

TT: What are the latest applications and scope of this technology in the technical textiles industry?

The main application of this technology is in the rope-making industry. Customers make rope of these high-performance fibres. What usually happens is that people get yarns, twist them together, make ropes and then coat them for the desired properties. But here, the coating may not penetrate deep enough. So, there is coating only outside of the rope and not inside it. In our case, before our customers twist and braid the yarns together, we make sure that each and every single filament is well-protected and consistently coloured. Also, net-makers are trying to improve the properties of the net, and this technology helps them. There is also an application of this technology in knitted fabrics, which can be used in industrial applications. Like Dyneema, it was only available in white. But customers wanted in different colours. So, what we do is we coat it in the desired colours, and then our customers knit it.

TT: Are you the only user of coating technology, despite this technology being not patented?

There are a few other companies who coat on the yarn level. However, our technology is cost-effective, and we can tailor the coating to the specific desires of our customer.

Published on: 18/07/2016

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of technicaltextile.net.


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