Eastman Chemicals Company in partnership with Unifi launches a new bicomponent polyester fibre, which allows much finer fibres to knitted into performance fabrics for the active apparel market. Avra is a new family of performance fibers enabled by a proprietary spinning technology which enables a ribbon-shaped synthetic fiber with a variable combination of shape and size.
Tim Dell, Eastman Vice President said that the apparel industry has known for decades that finer fibers create fabrics with softer hand and enhanced performance. There is a limit, however, to how fine one can go and still knit or weave on conventional equipment.
Avraâ€™s ultra-thin polyester fibres are extruded and held together by a proprietary removable polymer, enabling easy knitting or weaving. Once the fabric is made, the removable polymer completely washes away in hot water, resulting in ribbon-like fibres that are smaller than existing polyester fibers. The result is a distinctly silky fabric that keeps wearers drier and more comfortable than ever before.
The performance benefits imparted by this first Avra product include high level moisture management and a chemical-free â€œcool to the touchâ€ sensation. Fabrics made with Avra dry quickly â€“ up to 50% faster than conventional polyester fabrics, helping wearers stay cooler and more comfortable during demanding physical activities. In addition, the highly flexible fibers enabled by Avra further enhance wearer comfort through the superior drape and remarkable softness they provide.
Combining the technology and quality-driven expertise of Eastman and Unifi will help provide the industry with the next level of performance-enhancing fibres. This joint effort will enable a physical plant expansion at Unifi and provided additional jobs to the region.
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