How is gore-tex fabric made?
The GORE-TEX production process consists of the following steps:
• PTFE production
This is the first stage of Gore-Tex production. In this stage, the PTFE material is produced in different forms such as rods, blocks, or other large, solid shapes. In this process tetrafluoroethylene (TFE) is formed by combining three materials which are fluorspar, hydrofluoric acid, and chloroform. Then, these three substances are combined and then heat is applied to them. This results in the formation of TFE which is in the gaseous form at room temperature.
But, this substance is stored in cold, pressurized conditions in the liquid. Then this liquefied TFE is exposed to ammonium persulfate or another initiator substance. After this using the suspension polymerization or dispersion. It is combined with water. This process results in the formation of PTFE in either powder or pellet form. Then using heat, this powdered PTFE is given a solid shape.
In the second step of gore-tex formation, the resulting blocks of PTFE are formed into thin filaments which is facilitated by the application of reheat and rapid stretching. Once this resulting PTFE is cooled down then it is formed into large sheets that can then be cut into various shapes.
• Bonding with polyurethane
In the third step, the polyurethane (PU) layer is bonded underneath with the PTFE layer. After the binding of these two materials, the PTFE is stretched again to form ePTFE.
• Adding to garments and other items
To avoid the seeping of water through the layers of the garment, in most cases, GORE-TEX fabric layer is sewn underneath the uppermost layer of a garment.