For the first time, the World Textile Information Network (WTiN) is holding the European Digital Textile Conference at Texprocess on 10 May. The focus of the conference will be on digital textile printing for adding functional and decorative features to technical textiles. Not only will there be a separate lecture block on digital printing in the programme of the Texprocess Forum, the Digital Textile Microfactory will present a textile production chain in action, from the design stage to digital printing, automatic cutting out and fabrication. And, of course, numerous exhibitors will be showing digital printing technologies. Texprocess Forum is free of charge for visitors of Texprocess and Techtextil and will be held in Hall 6.0.
Increasing demand for individualised products
Michael Jänecke, Head of Brand Management, Textiles and Textile Technologies at Messe Frankfurt, explains why digital textile printing is a focal-point theme at Texprocess this year, “We are expanding our programme on the subject of digital printing in response to the growing demand for digitalised technologies for processing garments, technical textiles and flexible materials. This programme is of particular interest to manufacturers of technical textiles and companies that process textiles. Further elaborating, the Managing Director, VDMA Textile Care, Fabric and Leather Technologies, Elgar Straub, says,: “Thanks to digital textile printing, it is now possible to print apparel, shoes and technical textiles directly. Given the general trend towards individualisation, demand for individualised products is increasing in the apparel industry. This is turning digital textile printing into one of the future‑oriented technologies for companies that process garments and textiles.”
Originally developed for fashion fabrics, digital textile printing is also used for printing technical textiles, such as sports clothing, and textiles for the automobile industry, whereby the primary focus is on functionalising textiles. For example, swimwear can be made more colour-fast to resist frequent contact with water, chlorine, and exposure to the sun. Also, textiles can be finished by applying chemicals via an inkjet printer and thus be given dirt-repellent, antimicrobial and fire-retardant properties. Additionally, using an inkjet printer in the finishing process is advantageous in terms of sustainability and efficiency.
Texprocess Forum to spotlight digital printing technology
Digital printing technology will also be the subject of a separate lecture block at Texprocess Forum. At this international conference, experts from science and industry will focus on the latest findings relating to subjects of major importance to the sector in over 30 lectures and panel discussions on all four days of the fair. Some subjects to be covered in the lectures include direct yarn colouring in the embroidery plants, plasma pre-treatment for textiles before digital printing, and chemical finishing for textiles using inkjet printing technology.
Digital Textile Microfactory
In cooperation with the German Institutes of Textile and Fibre Research Denkendorf (DITF) and renowned textile companies, Texprocess presents the complete interlinked textile production chain: the Digital Textile Microfactory. The digital-printing station shows large-scale inkjet printing in the form of sublimation printing on polyester and pigment printing on cotton and blended fabrics. Production orders can be combined flexibly and printed colour consistently with a variety of printing parameters.