Earns R&D 100 Award: PFC-free DWR "NEOSEED NR-8800"
In September 2020, our PFC-free DWR "NEOSEED NR-8800", which combines silicone-specific soft texture with excellent water repellency, received the "2020 R&D 100 Award" sponsored by R&D World Magazine in the United States. "NEOSEED NR-8800" is an innovative product that solves the problem of seam slippage, which was a drawback of conventional silicone-based water repellents, with advanced surfactant technology, and its technology was highly evaluated.
The "R&D 100 Award" is a commendation for the best 100 products and technologies that have been put into practical use in the past year for research supported by industry, academia, and government. It is one of the world's prestigious technology awards that have been awarded based on "technical superiority".
This section introduces the path to the completion of the "NEOSEED NR-8800", which is brightened by the R&D 100 Award winners.
To achieve both Water Repellency and Ease of movement required for Sports and Outdoor wear
Global Apparel, Sports, and Outdoor manufacturers are participating in the Detox Campaign to reduce the use and emission of all hazardous chemical substances to zero throughout the global supply chain by the end of 2020. As part of their efforts to achieve the SDGs, they are working to eliminate the use and emission of potentially harmful chemicals. In response to this trend, the movement to seek PFC-free based DWR is accelerating worldwide. However, acrylic and urethane-based DWR, which have become the mainstream alternative techniques, have suffered from issues such as hardening of texture of the treated fabrics and generation of scratch marks.
In particular, sports and outdoor wear are required to have a soft texture that does not impair comfort when wearing and does not degrade the design due to scratch marks. It was necessary to clear various performances such as durable water repellency, soft texture, prevention of seam slippage, and prevention of scratch marks.
In developing and evaluating various ingredients, we discovered innovative silicone ingredients that do not impair texture while dramatically improving water repellency and do not cause seam slippage. In an effort to increase the level of technology, NICCA began joint development with Dow, a global material science manufacturer, in the U.S. After many years of joint developments, we finally completed "NEOSEED NR-8800" that is both water repellent and soft texture.
Compatibility of high-level durable water repellency and soft texture, which have been considered difficult conventionally. It was because of the difficulty in meeting various fabric physical properties.
Usually, when texture is soft, the yarns constituting the fabric tend to slip, and when the fabric is pulled or subjected to a force, the fabric structure collapses and holes are likely to open. In the case of down jackets, there were problems such as the down feathers inside being easily pulled out and the water repellency being weakened. To solve this problem, it was only necessary to form a film with a hard resin. It was difficult to solve both the soft texture and the problem of seam slippage.
In addition, in recent years, there has been a tendency to use ultrafine fibers for lightening, the more easily the fabric structure is broken and the more easily the hole is opened, so that it has become an even more difficult problem to cope with.
Even for such high walls, we challenged the development without giving up and established the technology to form a film so that the fabric structure does not collapse without disturbing the texture.
Features of "NEOSEED NR-8800"
"NEOSEED NR-8800" offers the following values as a DWR that combines excellent water repellency with soft texture.
- Achieves water repellency with excellent washing durability, making it ideal for fields that require high water repellency such as outdoor wear.
- It can be used for a wide range of applications such as thin and lightweight material, as it does not impair the texture of the fabric.
- Provides the treated fabric with excellent tear strength and anti seam slip properties, preventing the fabric from deteriorating due to abrasion during wear.
NR-8800 is recognized for its value in a succession of global apparel and sporting goods brands, and its use in comfortable down-jackets and outerwear is expanding. If you are interested, please feel free to contact us.
Comments from R&D Person in charge
As a lover of mountain climbing, I preferred to use a type that is easy to move even in waterproof outerwear such as raincoats. However, as one of the consumers, I was wondering if I could somehow improve the hard texture of the water repellent finish, especially those with PFC-free water-repellent agents. "NEOSEED NR-8800" developed this time is exactly DWR I had been looking for. When I bought a commercial product that processed NR-8800 and went climbing a mountain, I was able to realize what I had envisioned, and I was filled with emotion.
As a developer who loves outdoors, we will continue our development to contribute to global outdoor and apparel manufacturers through my work.
R&D Person in Charge
NICCA CHEMICAL (HQ)
NICCA CHEMICAL (HQ)
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