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With its theme of ‘Connecting the Future’, it was only to be expected that smart fabrics – together with many complementary Industry 4.0 developments in automation, connectivity and digitized processing – would be prominently featured at this year’s Techtextil and Texprocess shows held together in Frankfurt, Germany, on 9–12 June 2017, and this certainly turned out to be the case. Adrian Wilson reports. 

The growth in the development of specialist machinery and equipment targeted specifically at the manufacture of technical textiles is never better illustrated than in the importance that all of the major builders devote to Techtextil. Editor Nick Butler presents his selection of the highlights to be found during the exhibition’s next edition, taking place in Frankfurt, Germany, on 9–12 May 2017.

Research and development and the diverse organizations that support it are vital to the health of the technical textile sector and will be well represented at Techtextil, writes Editor Nick Butler.

Chemical suppliers continue to create treatments that can add a variety of functionalities to textiles, but one major theme at Techtextil in 2017 will be the development of alternatives to fluorocarbons as water- and liquid-repellents, reports Editor Nick Butler.

Coating, laminating and finishing processes are vital to the transformation of textiles for technical applications. Once again, the latest innovations in these processes will be to the fore at Techtextil, says Editor Nick Butler.

Textile developments for all kinds of applications will fill the halls of Messe Frankfurt, according to Editor Nick Butler.

Despite following closely on from the Nonwovens for High-performance Applications conference(1) and Index 17(2), Techtextil's exhibitors will reveal even more technical end-uses for nonwovens. Editor Nick Butler picks some highlights from their plans. 

The ingenuity of the leading manufacturers of fibres, filaments and yarns continues to create a wealth of opportunities for technical textiles. Editor Nick Butler selects some of the highlights to look for during Techtextil in Frankfurt, Germany, on 9–12 May 2017.

The booming composites market is creating a variety of exciting opportunities for manufacturers of textiles and nonwovens. So said the Chairman of Composites Germany and the German Federation of Reinforced Plastics (AVK), Michael Effing, in his keynote presentation to the Nonwovens for High-performance Applications (NHPA) conference in Prague, Czech Republic, on 8 March 2017. Composites Editor James Bakewell reports.

On 1 April 2016, the then US Secretary of Defense announced the formation of the Advanced Functional Fabrics of America initiative, which has set itself the goal of helping the country’s industry to capture a 30% share of the global market for technical textiles. One year on, John McCurry spoke to key figures to report on progress.