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Safe use of nanomaterials in the textile finishing industry.

Name of the coordinating beneficiary: LEITAT TECHNOLOGICAL CENTER

LEITAT is a private non-profit Technological Centre specialized in production technologies, and develops R&D activities in the areas of materials sciences (including nanotechnology), environment, surface treatments, biotechnologies and renewable energies. LEITAT aims to offer services to the companies of the industrial sector by adding value both to products and processes.

LEITAT performs projects and managing initiatives, which promote sustainable technological development, environmental impact analysis and protection plans by the responsible use of technology. The centre has a strong competence in the field of nanomaterials, nano-toxicology, fate and bioaccumulation, as well as in REACH compliance and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of nanomaterials.

Concerning the first field, LEITAT develops new nanocomposites, produces nanoparticles and modifies them chemically for nano-additivation, functionalization of textiles and development of multifunctional and smart materials; the company deals also with ageing/weathering studies and monitoring of physico-chemical properties of nanomaterials during its life cycle.

LEITAT applies the methodology of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) as a key tool to assess the potential environmental impacts and benefits of products, services and technologies developed. LEITAT carries out LCA studies according to ISOs 14040 and 14044 and the recommendations of the ILCD Handbook of the European Platform on LCA. LEITAT has applied this methodology in a high number of EU projects to assess the environmental impacts of products and services of different sectors as well as products based on nanotechnology and nanomaterials.

LEITAT has experience in Human & Environmental Risk assessment, using the main standardized methodologies and tools such as ECETOC-TRA, EUSES, ART tool or Stoffen Manager. LEITAT applies these methodologies in EU projects focusing on the risk assessment of different processes and products.

Name of the associated beneficiary: ITENE

Instituto Tecnológico del Embalaje, Transporte y Logística ITENE is a Research Institute constituted in 1994 as a private non-profit Research center integrated with businesses, entities and institutions related to Packaging, Transport and Logistics.

Our mission consists of improving business competitiveness through the promotion of research, development, innovation and advanced technological services.

The R&D Divisions in ITENE involved within ECOTEXNANO project are: Safety & Security, Sustainability and ICT areas.

These three Divisions have a high experience within the following areas related to the tasks assigned within ECOTEXNANO: Exposure assessment: quantitative assessment of airborne nanoparticles by means of measurement devices (CPC, SMPS, APS, NSAM…) / Application of predictive models to carry out evaluation of hazard and risk assessment of nanoparticles: QSAR, QNTR… / Development of predictive models to predict toxicity, exposure, etc / Evaluation of effectiveness of risk management measures (PPEs, engineering controls, exhaustive ventilation…) / Development of procedures and strategies to manage the risk exposure of nanoparticles/ Life Cycle Assessment and Carbon Footprint of product and processes / Life Cycle Cost Analysis / Sustainability Assessment / Product and process ecoefficiency evaluation/ Web design and development / Mobile applications development / Information systems integration.

Name of the associated beneficiary: Vincolor

VINCOLOR forms part of a holding of 3 enterprises: CREVIN, VINTEX and VINCOLOR. The holding is a totally vertical organization, from product development to weaving, finishing and marketing, with a constant quality control over all production stages as evidenced under the ISO 9001 and 14001 certifications. Export currently accounts for 75% of the total turnover.

CREVIN is a family company that since 1976 has been dedicated to the production and marketing of upholstery fabrics. Pioneers in many ways, Crevin is always in the forefront of creating innovative fabrics that respond to needs for design and technical excellence. Crevin fabrics are sold in over 50 countries around the world.

VINTEX is the group’s manufacturing plant where the weaving of Crevin fabrics takes place. Fabrics are either produced in greige goods (raw fabrics that are later to be dyed), or yarn-dyed fabrics, with the use of state-of-the-art, computer driven looms. All fabrics are subjected to thorough quality controls prior to their finishing. VINCOLOR is the group’s dyeing- and finishing plant.

The experience of VINCOLOR in finishing dates back to 1988. Apart from the dyeing the most common finishings applied are easy-care treatments that add significant value to the end-product. Upon customer’s requests fabrics can be finished with special flame protection and waterproof backings.

The groups Quality and Environmental Management Systems fulfill the requirements of the Standards ISO-9001 and ISO-14001. Under ISO 14001 an effective environmental management system has been implemented that focuses on the safety of the production cycle, from raw materials to the finished product, and lays emphasis on the efficiency of production processes (minimizing energy, gas and water usage) and the recycling of industrial waste.

Before their commercialization all fabrics are tested by European, independent Technological Centers in conformance with harmonized European product standards and technical specifications.



Name of the associated beneficiary: CENTEXBEL

Centexbel is the scientific and technical research centre for the Belgian Textile industry, located in the heart of the Belgian textile industry with strong links to the majority of the more than 700 textile companies. Centexbel offers a complete range of standardised testing, is a notified body for protective clothing and can deliver CE marking and testing. Centexbel is also involved in standardization committees and offers technological advice and training to companies in Belgium or abroad, e.g. sustainability, environmental subjects, implementation of environmental management systems.

The research focus of Centexbel is on applied research, funded by private contract as well as state and international agencies (e.g. FP6, FP7, Eureka, Eranet). Some well selected subjects for strategic research are followed, being:

(i) polymer formulation and extrusion processes (incl. biopolymers),
(ii) innovative finishing, coating and laminating formulations and technology,
(iii) biomedical interactions of textiles (incl. biocidal activity, cytotoxicity),
(iv) intelligent textiles and
(v) sustainable textile production


Name of the associated beneficiary: Piacenza

Fratelli Piacenza S.p.A. is a manufacturer of fine woolen fabrics, leader in the top segment of noble fibre fabrics for luxury market, and pure cashmere knitwear. It is supplier of fabrics to all world-leading fashion manufacturers (Zegna, Gucci, Prada, Louis Vuitton, Hermès among the others).

Based in Italian textile district of Biella it is one of the oldest textile industries of the world, founded in 1733 and from then on owned by the Piacenza family. The production strategy is based on “quality of excellence” obtained by strict control of production.

Piacenza keeps internal those production phases which give an added value perceived by the customer (for ex. raw material acquisition, finishing, inspection) or a production flexibility.

Piacenza competitive strategy is focused on maximum differentiation of the product, in terms of raw material choice, style, and color, and design, where it offers new, customized and/or exclusive fabrics in close cooperation with fashion stylists.

Piacenza strategic target is not to increase quantity but average price, enforcing market barriers based on design, know how, personalized service and sharp delivery. Flexibility of production is critical to keep costs under control in presence of reducing average lot dimension and shortening time to market. This tendency is expected to strengthen in the long run, as proved by the entitlement of two Thematic Expert Groups (TEG 7 and 8) of 7FP European Technology Platform to “mass customization” and “virtual prototyping instruments”, where Piacenza is participating as industry end user.



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