Woven Aeroplanes: How the textile industry fights to survive
The textile industry have struggled for a long time to keep afloat and keep up with the changing demands and needs from consumers.
One hundred years ago, the British textile industry was at its peak, but since then the decline has been great due to the rising in foreign competition, high taxes etc.
However, modern fibres are created in labs, not in mills and these are being developed all the time – McLaren cars are based on a woven product, and the next generation of aircraft will be woven.
Extremely strong and lightweight, high performance carbon fibers are being manufactured for non traditional uses like composites for the aerospace industry. Parts are made from high strength fibres as Dupont and Kevlar. Kevlar is the solution for light weight, strength, and the stability which demanded for aircraft structures. This fiber is used to make a variety of clothing, accessories, and equipment safe and cut resistant. It’s lightweight and extraordinarily strong. It is five times stronger than steel on an equal-weight basis . Due to its critical function on an aircraft, these fabrics ensure that the resulting panels sustain maximum structural integrity without adding more weight. Carbon fabrics also provide vital thermal benefits and can withstand temperatures of 1500ºC without substantial loss to the fiber properties.
The textile industry is developing into something different where technology is key, serving markets as diverse as agriculture, nutrition, electronics and communications, safety and protection, home and construction, transportation.