For many officials, police, and others who wear uniforms that are uncomfortable is a growing issue. But new fabric technology could help make uniforms comfortable enough to wear all day long. Cocona, which is a patented technology from Trap Tek, LLC, is a process which extracts carbon found in recycled coconut shells and infuses it into fibres and threads used to make clothing. This process, which was developed by Gregory W. Haggquist, Ph.D., who is also the founder of the company, will be allowing Burlington Worldwide (BWW) to use the technology in the manufacturing of clothing, which includes uniforms.
“TrapTek came up with some pretty interesting intellectual property (IP), but it was just a small IP company and needed help in commercialising the technology,” said Burlington World Wide labs vice president, Nelson Bebo. Burlington has been working with Trap Tek for the past two years perfecting the technology so that they could begin production. But being able to manufacture better clothing is only one reason for the technology.
Helping the environment is another. “Not only are we using a green material, but we’re recycling what would have been thrown into landfills. This is encapsulated to provide a durable surface that allows the activated carbon to go through the very rigorous processing of polyester or nylon fibres and survive that process. The protective coating actually comes off during the course of fiber extrusion, and that releases activated carbon to be very much a part of that fibre,” said Jonathan Erb, of TrapTek.
Burlington plans on using the technology to launch new active wear made from synthetic fibres and organic fibres. “Everything is focusing on the technology to drive easier care, better performance. With wool, for example, take the cool suit: How do you make a wool suit more comfortable? You can take Cocona yarn, blend it with wool, and get performance benefits including exceptional moisture wicking and evaporation to add comfort — plus you have the sustainability story,” said Bebo.
(c)Richard Styles, www.sxc.hu