Technical Textiles Safety and Functionality
Functionality is one of the primary reasons why technical textiles are so important. A car would not work without certain materials that had the ability to withstand vast amounts of heat or cold. The car would be unsafe to use without them. Heavy machinery that is used to build larger structures would not be operational without quality technical textiles. In fact, the machines would not be able to carry out their intended purpose. A technical textile places function far above aesthetic qualities to ensure that goals are met sufficiently.
Workplace safety is another driving force behind the flourishing UK technical textiles industry. It is easy to take some everyday safety products for granted. These products include hard hat plastics and kevlar. Kevlar is a material that has the power to stop knife or bullet wounds. Policemen and women wear kevlar vests whenever they enter a hostile situation. They are so commonplace that you would be hard-pressed to find an officer who does not use one. A construction worker’s hard hat is made of a technical textile plastic that has the ability to protect the head from heavy falling objects. It is amazing that this type of textile has the ability to offer this protection, while maintaining a light weight.
Perhaps one of the most amazing technical textiles involves those used by firefighters. Firefighters must wear clothing that keeps them safe from extreme temperatures and physical harm. Most materials will begin to melt if they are exposed to extreme heat. However, firefighter jackets are able to remain intact. These same jackets and pants are able to deflect burning debris or liquified materials that might otherwise burn the skin. Consider how hot your oven gets and it is easy to see why UK firefighters must have the proper attire to save lives.
Cut resistant technical textiles are important as well. The most common examples of cut resistant materials are found in the gloves that people wear. Cooks and chefs wear them when they prepare meals. Accidents are prone to happen when a meal must be prepared quickly. Factory workers use gloves to prevent cutting injuries as well. Heated wires, glass, and shards of metal, all have the ability to maim, injure, or kill a person who is not properly protected. The next time you use a piece of safety equipment, consider the technical textile that was used to create it.