research and development
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R & D

Germany has a strong network of textile research centers. The high-performance institutes are located in the former historical centers of the textile industry in Baden-Wuerttemberg, North Rhine-Westphalia, Saxony and Thuringia. Thanks to them, the textile industry has turned from a traditional sector for clothing, home textiles and fashion into the world’s largest producer and exporter of technical textiles.

Beneficiaries are aviation, automotive and logistics as well as the construction and machine building sectors or the health care and energy industry. Smart Textiles or fibers with new surface properties are used more and more for clothing and home textiles.

Textile research gives priority to material research. It focusses mainly on new materials, fibers’ and fabric’s properties, composites, surface functionalization, production and processing technologies, material safety, value chain, resource efficiency and sustainability.

For more than 60 years now, FKT coordinates a network of actually 16 textile research institutes in Germany. About 1.200 researchers participate in national and EU funding schemes to develop new technologies and innovations in the field of fiber-based materials and textile composites giving input into many industrial growth sectors.

This unique textile research network links education, research and economy. Collective research projects initiated by SME are funded on a pre-competitive level in the scheme of Industrielle Gemeinschaftsforschung (IGF) by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.

Due to these research activities textile industry converted to a material supplier constantly renewing products, processes and services. FKT accelerates knowledge transfer of research results into SME by linking industry and science.

Forschungsthemen

Apparel

Apparel textiles are today true high-performance materials that offer many additional functions - for work, medicine or simply for more comfort.

Architecture

The term architecture sounds like concrete, glass and steel. But the future belongs to special textiles that make entirely new architectural solutions possible.

Blick vom Waldboden aus nach oben in die Baumkronen.

Basic topics

The German textile industry focuses not only on new textile products but also on environmentally friendly production and the saving of raw materials.

Das Rotorblatt einer Windkraftanlage mit integrierter textiler Sensorik.

Energy

Textiles can heat, cool and harvest energy from the environment. They also help to reduce the consumption of fossil fuels.

Die Living Wall, ein IGF-Projekt der DITF in Denkendorf kann man am Forschungskubus auf dem Institutsgelände bei Stuttgart bestaunen.

Food

Textiles have long been essential for food and water supply - as a water filter. In the future many more applications will be added.

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Future City

Textiles can clean the air, shield heat, even dampen noise - they are the ideal material for the livable city of the future. (German version)

Hightex für die Medizin - Ein textiles Blutgefäß (hier: Stent).

Health

Textiles are not just band-aid. Today, textiles fight diseases and heal - amazingly easy and often without the use of medical equipment.

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Living

Functional textiles change the living. Textile room dividers, glowing curtains, heating walls, self-cleaning carpets and floor covering with sensors are...

Carbon Fasern

Mobility

Textiles can be used to charge electric vehicles and fuel hydrogen cars - light carbon fiber will soon be a must for cars and planes.

Production and logistics

Individuality, tailor made products, resource savings - the textile industry is constantly developing sophisticated new processes and materials.