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Features

In their attempts to conquer space travel, today’s private companies backed by entrepreneurs have a rich legacy of development work from the USA’s National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to draw on, writes Adrian Wilson

The fifteenth edition of Techtextil North America (TTNA) will take place in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, on 22–24 May 2018. Co-located with Texprocess Americas, also organized by Messe Frankfurt Inc of Atlanta, the combined shows offer a comprehensive overview of the performance textiles industry in the region, from the beginning to the end of the supply chain, and have become an important date in the calendar. To help our readers find what they want in the expansive halls of the Georgia World Congress Center, Composites Editor James Bakewell has compiled this preview of the shows

Founded in 1880, Bekaert of Zwevegem, Belgium, has grown to become a worldwide company with around 30 000 employees specializing in steel wire and coating technologies. For more than 40 years, an important part of this activity has been in developing, making and supplying metal/metal alloy fibres, textiles and semi-finished products, reports Nick Butler.

Few can afford to ignore the draw of the large and fast-growing market in China, but many are still worried about trading there owing to the unique challenges this poses. Jason Teng believes reassurance is to be found in first understanding how to use the local legal framework for intellectual property rights to protect the would-be trader’s innovations.

On 6–8 March 2018, Nord Villepinte Exhibition Centre in Paris, France, will host the annual exhibition JEC World. Much like the sector it represents, the composites industry's flagship event appears to be going from strength to strength, reports James Bakewell.

The founding of SGL Automotive Carbon Fibers (SGL-ACF) in 2009 by carmaker BMW and carbon fibre producer SGL Group sparked unprecedented activity across the composites and technical textiles industries—especially in Germany. However, with its most recent models, BMW has moved away from car bodies based purely on carbon fibre composites and, as was always possible, has now withdrawn from SGL-ACF. What does this mean for carbon fibre and the automotive industry? asks Adrian Wilson.

Deborah Maxwell, Associate Patent Attorney at Potter Clarkson, explains the key components of an effective strategy for intellectual property, outlines a four-step process for developing such an approach and addresses how to keep it up to date as a business evolves. 

Drawing on more than 25 years of experience in the industry, Charlotte Brandt from technical textiles specialist Arville reviews the advances that have been made in the development of antiballistic fabrics, examining the challenges that continue to be met by manufacturers.

John McCurry spoke to the two principals behind the specialist airlaid machinery builder Rando Machine Corp to learn about the company’s philosophy towards supplying the evolving needs of its customers around the world.

Lively debates on topics of importance to the industry, together with many examples of the latest commercial innovations, held the attention of several hundred attendees of one of the sector’s most important annual conferences. Adrian Wilson reports for Technical Textiles International

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