Fiera Milano RHOMilan . Italy
Finishing machine manufacturers have options to improve their products in a sustainable way. Continuous technological developments result in a smaller environmental footprint without compromising final fabric quality.
The finishing sector is undoubtedly the most significant stage in the value chain – contributing to a wide range of properties in the textile end-use. Bringing an ideal look, touch and functionality to numerous different applications smart innovations is a real challenge for machine manufacturers. And they must also meet customer demands for solutions that are both resource and environmentally friendly.
For fabric finishing, there are two energy saving machine development strategies: technology which skips one or more production steps, to shorten the finishing process; the use of latest-technology components such as motors, electrical and electronic controls, which can significantly reduce energy consumption.
Optimising finishing processes is another way to save energy. The highest potential for energy saving today would be in reducing the use of steam, water or electricity in the different processing stages, and adopting technical solutions to limit or partially recover the energy consumed.
One practical example is an indirect water-cooling system to reduce the compacting belt temperature. With this system, the water is recovered by passing it through a chiller to keep its temperature at the right level. This technology can save about three cubic metres per hour, based on calculations with Sperotto Rimar’s open-width compacting and finishing machine for knitted and woven fabrics. This water, totally unpolluted, can be continuously recovered and re-used in the machine. Traditional technology uses nozzles that spray water on the belt surface. The disadvantage is that the water is then discharged into the drain, as it is contaminated with fluff and other products contained in the treated fabric.
Sophisticated machines for solvent scouring for synthetic fabrics recycle more than 99% of the chemicals used in the process and almost totally remove the oil contained in the fabric. This avoids the release of polluted fumes in subsequent thermic processes (heat-setting). As well, the energy needed to dry solvent is ten times less than to dry the same amount of water. Furthermore, today’s solvent scouring solutions become environmentally friendly machines, as they work with a closed loop system in which air and the solvent are properly treated and recycled.
Chemical use in finishing is a sensitive subject. Innovative machines can partially compensate for the role of chemicals in some cases. The chemicals used in dry finishing processes are usually softeners or resins which enhance the final appearance and touch of the fabric, which are then transferred to the final garment. A prime example is Compas – Sperotto Rimar’s compacting machine. Thanks to its unique compacting method, it imparts a silky touch that only partially comes from the softeners used but mainly derives from the special materials in the machine design. Thanks to technology, saving the environment doesn’t mean end-users have to compromise on the touch and feel of fabrics.
About Sperotto Rimar
Sperotto Rimar is a leading manufacturer of textile finishing machines, based on sound technology and proven know-how. Founded in Italy in 1949, Sperotto Rimar specialises in machinery for the finishing of fabrics made of natural fibres as well as blends. Sperotto Rimar stands for world-renowned products, technical expertise and reliability.
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