UK’s Alchemie Technology launches new finishing process for 85% cost reduction
Cambridge-based Alchemie Technology has come up with what it says is a “breakthrough textile finishing solution [that] reduces energy costs”.
Called Novara, the company claims European manufacturers “can save €1 million per year as gas prices soar” with the new process.
It uses high-velocity jetting technology to apply nano droplets of functional finishes (single-sided and only where needed) on fabrics, “using 85% less energy and up to 50% less chemistry compared to traditional methods”.
That should also feed into sustainability strategies. It said “traditional textile finishing is an energy intensive process which applies liquid finishes by immersing the whole fabric in a chemical bath, adding [around] 80% water by mass to the fabric which then needs to be dried”.
Less water, fewer chemicals and energy use reduction are all major features of company sustainability policies and many have ambitious targets in these areas.
But affordability is also key for brands, manufacturers and retailers seeing their supply chain costs increasing and with European gas prices having risen from €16 a year ago to over €115 per megawatt hour (MWh) on March 1, that’s likely to be an appealing message as the process is marketed.
Alchemie said it requires over 2 kWh per kg of material to dry fabrics that have been through a padding bath and it estimates that rising gas costs have increased annual energy costs for a typical EU textile finishing operation by over €1 million a year.