Membrane specialist eVent fabrics will feature its numerous technologies and fabrics used in footwear, apparel and accessories at the upcoming Techtextil show, which takes place next month (4-7 May) in Frankfurt, Germany.
While the US based manufacturer is best known for its pioneering and patented air permeable and waterproof ePTFE membranes used in consumer brands, the company has, in fact, served the professional market with protective membrane solutions since 2008.
Protecting professionals against hazards and weather
eVent fabrics’ bi-component Direct Diffusion membrane technology is used in fabrics for clothing and footwear for military, police and fire fighters around the world. The polyurethane (PU) membranes are said to meet the most rigorous specifications depending on the end use and environment where products are used.
Typically, the membranes—configured in 3-layer laminates—can be waterproof, windproof and breathable to guard against the weather. But the same technology can also provide protection against hazards on the job, such as fire, heat, toxic chemicals, petroleum, blood borne pathogens and more, the company reports.
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“We are an established supplier of high performance membranes to many notable militaries and public safety markets around the world. Our film manufacturing capabilities are respected for their durability, quality, and consistency,” said Chad Kelly, Global Product Manager for eVent fabrics.
All of eVent fabrics’ membranes are manufactured in the United States in a dedicated facility that also creates products for medical and air filtration applications. The finished film products are shipped to lamination and textile partners located strategically around the world to best serve global apparel and footwear manufacturers.
Kelly points out that eVent’s business with the professional market was, until recently, known as a product line of General Electric (GE), which owned eVent fabrics for ten years. In December 2013, CLARCOR Inc. purchased eVent fabrics and GE’s filtration business to form CLARCOR Industrial Air, a leading supplier of industrial air filtration systems, filters and membranes. The change in ownership enables eVent fabrics, which is well known in consumer apparel and footwear arena, to extend its brand strength and successes to the professional marketplace.
Direct Venting Technology – waterproof and air permeable
The eVent name is best known for its premium performance ePTFE (expanded polytetrafluoroethylene) membranes. Currently, approximately 100 consumer brands—including Rab, Karrimor, Teva, REI, UGG, and Castelli—use the patented Direct Venting technology in their waterproof products, ranging from accessories to footwear and clothing to tents for outdoor sports such as trekking, climbing, skiing and cycling.
Direct Venting (DV) technology is said to be unique because it is air permeable, with millions of open pores that allow body heat and moisture to pass through the membrane nearly instantly, preventing the clammy feeling often felt inside waterproof apparel.
According to eVent, the membrane is also waterproof—rain and snow cannot pass through the membrane, so the wearer also stays dry from the outside.
In fact, according to Kelly, eVent fabrics was the first company to create air permeable and waterproof technology for apparel—its patented Direct Venting technology came to market in 1999. Over the years Backpacker, Outside, Outdoor Enthusiast, Outdoor and many other magazines have awarded and applauded the performance of products made with eVent.
Kelly says that eVent’s air permeable technology has performance benefits applicable for the workwear market, too.
“Workers who are exposed to long days of bad weather and who are generating a lot of body heat will stay more comfortable in workwear made with an air permeable membrane,” he explained.
“Their heat and moisture immediately escapes through their clothing or boots in vapour form because the membrane has an open porous structure. It’s not impeded by polyurethane or any other coating.” The benefit, beyond comfort, is that overheating is prevented which can lead to improved productivity and safety on the job.
Latest Innovations with Direct Venting Technology – DVstretch and DVstorm
eVent recently introduced two new membrane innovations using its Direct Venting technology—DVstretch and DVstorm, evidence of the company’s record in meeting changing markets demands.
Stretch fabrics made with eVent’s inventive DVstretch technology are now on the market, primarily in cycling apparel, thanks to the collaboration between Italian textile house ITTTAI-Bel Punto S.r.l. and the team at eVent fabrics. This innovation features the eVent ePTFE membrane in laminations that have an unprecedented degree of stretch—finished fabrics can stretch up to 85% and fully recover, according to the company.
“High stretch with excellent recovery capability has been extremely difficult to achieve with ePTFE,” said Kelly. “The hurdle has been in the lamination and ITTTAI-Bel Punto solved this challenging trick.”
Two developments were required to successfully create the high-stretch DVstretch fabrics. ITTTAI-Bel Punto created the proprietary lamination process that allows the three-layer laminates to stretch yet retain their elasticity.
The eVent fabrics team produced a unique membrane product that would meet the requirements of the lamination process, as well as achieve specific performance benefits. The fabrics are windproof and water-resistant.
According to Kelly, this combination of performance benefits is ideal for aerobically demanding sports that generate a lot of heat and moisture but also require essential protection from wind and weather. Beyond cycling, other uses include running, Nordic skiing, trekking and climbing where athletic-fitting stretchable garments are desired.
DVstorm is the second new development from eVent fabrics and is now selling to consumers from technical outdoor consumer brands Rab and Montane.
Three-layer laminates made with the DVstorm membrane use 15-denier face fabrics and 10-denier backers, which result in lighter and softer finished fabrics for weather-proof outerwear.
According to the company, test results show that DVstorm fabrics are approximately 20% lighter and 15% more breathable than fabrics made with eVent’s original DValpine membrane. Internal test data shows the waterproof water column rating is 10 metres or greater, and breathability measures 31,000g/m2/24 hours using test method JIS 1099-B1.
The high breathability of DVstorm fabrics helps enhance the comfort of rainwear used by alpinists, trekkers, cyclists and other active outdoor enthusiasts who generate body heat and moisture while facing moderate wet weather and conditions.
“We are very excited about the lighter weight and even more breathable DVstorm development from eVent fabrics,” said Tim Jasper, Head of Design at Rab. Rab incorporated DVstorm in its Muztag Jacket, Alpine Bivi as well as its Latok line of tents. “Light weight and high performance are essential for the conditions in which our new shelters and the Muztag jacket will be put to the test.”
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This article was orininally published at: http://www.innovationintextiles.com/protective-membrane-solutions-provider-event-fabrics-sets-its-sights-on-professional-market/#sthash.QYJnY2Cc.dpuf