SABIC Innovative Plastics has announced that its versatile, high-performance Ultem polyetherimide (PEI) fibre has found an important new application in high-end work wear and protective clothing. Japan Wool Textile Company is now blending Ultem fibre with wool and other materials to produce yarn, fabrics and garments that offer a unique combination of comfort and protection, including permanent, non-halogenated flame retardance (FR) and excellent ultraviolet (UV) resistance. Unlike traditional aramid materials, Ultem fibre can be easily and cost-effectively coloured in a wide range of shades using conventional polyester dyeing processes, enabling Japan Wool Textile Company to enhance the aesthetic appeal of its new line. SABIC Innovative Plastics continues to penetrate and grow new market segments and expand the range of applications for its globally proven Ultem resin technology to give customers innovative new options for product differentiation and exceptional performance.
“The work wear and protective clothing sector has outgrown traditional materials, and our Ultem fibre offers a significantly better option,” said Kim Choate, global product marketing manager, SABIC Innovative Plastics. “This flexible, soft and colourable fibre provides superior comfort and aesthetics, plus sustainable FR technology and the highest level of protection and durability for workers in safety-focused industries such as oil and gas and chemicals. We foresee many other uses for this versatile fibre, which has already broken new ground in composite aerospace boards for aviation interiors, filtration media and other demanding applications.”
“Following a rigorous development process, we launched a completely new flame-retardant material by using Ultem fibre,” said Takanobu Matsumoto, general manager, Japan Wool Textile Company. “Particularly in the areas of improved comfort and colourability, our new work wear products will provide major benefits for customers and address unmet market needs. This SABIC Innovative Plastics technology has also helped us to establish an overseas market for our work wear.”
Japan Wool Textile currently offers shirts, trousers, jackets and coveralls in an Ultem fibre-rich blend, as well as yarn and woven fabrics.