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Smart and interactive textiles
published in Issue 13, 2nd Quarter 2005
In 20 years' time clothes made from smart and interactive textiles which can think for themselves may be commonplace. Such textiles have integrated technology or have new functions or capabilities. Some of the key methods which are being used and developed for smart textiles in performance apparel are wearable electronics, nanotechnology, phase change materials, and shape memory materials.
Applications range from the highly complex life support systems to the convenient or fun, and from life saving military uniforms to stain resistance or entertainment on the go.
Currently, the market for smart and interactive textiles is in its infancy. According to the US technology market research and strategy consulting firm Venture Development Corporation (VDC), it was worth about US$340 mn in 2004. At present, many products are being launched in search of a market. The main areas of focus for smart and interactive textiles are the military, healthcare, and performance sportswear. Within the next few years, however, rapid growth within these sectors is likely to double the size of the overall market for smart and interactive textiles.
A large proportion of the funding for research and development comes from governments in Europe, Asia and notably the USA. Much of the US government funding is being ploughed into developing a military uniform capable of looking after the wearer and the uniform itself. But developments in this field also have commercial uses in other sectors such as medical and sportswear.
Numerous companies from a diverse range of backgrounds—such as communications, textiles and science—are vying for attention in this market. Their future success hinges on effective collaboration between professionals from a wide range of disciplines.
Four times a year, Performance Apparel Markets provides an overview of the sector for performance apparel and corporatewear. It provides market data and analysis of new and established markets for performance fibres, fabrics and clothing, and is essential reading for executives who are working in (or supplying) this fast growing sector. It is also an invaluable one-stop-shop where people who are not involved in the industry on a day-to-day basis can find an authoritative source of relevant information which helps them to quickly gain an understanding of the key issues facing the companies in this sector.
Reports in Performance Apparel Markets include:
reports on major developments in the global performance apparel market, focusing on new products and technologies, innovative fibres and key players;
detailed, independently-researched reports on one of the following topics: antimicrobial fibres and fabrics, anti-static technology, flame resistant fibres and fabrics, high strength fibres and fabrics, high visibility apparel, microencapsulation, moisture management fabrics, performance swimwear, seamless knitting and stitch-free seaming technologies, smart and interactive textiles, stain protective apparel, stretch fibres and fabrics, surfwear and surf-inspired clothing, temperature regulation, UV protective fibres and fabrics, and waterproof breathable fabrics;
company profiles, outlining the business, product, market and manufacturing strategies employed by key players in the performance apparel industry; and
business news and developments affecting global performance apparel markets, majoring on innovations, mergers and acquisitions, investments, joint ventures, and financial performances.
Performance apparel represents one of the fastest growing sectors of the international textile and clothing industry – and market growth is being fuelled by the emergence of new fibres, new fabrics and innovative process technologies. The market is also being boosted by changes in consumer lifestyles. People are living longer and spending more time on leisure activities. New high-tech fabrics are being developed for a wide range of active sports such as aerobics, athletics, ballooning, cycling, hiking, mountaineering, parachuting, sailing, skiing, snowboarding, swimming, and windsurfing.
Exciting innovations are emerging in smart textiles and nanotechnology – and the sector’s growth prospects are helped by the trend in increasing demand for performance features in mainstream fashion.
Performance Apparel Markets is available on subscription – either in printed format only, or in printed and electronic format. If you choose the printed only option, you will receive 4 printed publications a year. Each issue contains five reports (as above).
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In addition, you will be able to download PDF files containing the same information – but the PDF files will be available immediately on publication, so you don’t have to wait for the printing and mailing. You also have all the benefits of electronic files: instant access even when you are away from the office; convenient storage in your PC or laptop; portability; electronic search facility; and copy/paste facility.
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A subscription to Performance Apparel Markets will support your decision making, and provide the information you need to expand into new markets.