Textile Printing

Researchers develop solution for economical digital pigment printing of textiles

Interview with project leader Prof. Dr Maike Rabe, research insitute for textiles and clothing (Forschungsinstitut für Textil und Bekleidung (FTB)) of Hochschule Niederrhein.

How is it that printing on textiles is not sustainable from an ecological point of view? The reason for this is that the textile undergoes extensive washing, drying and fixating processes both prior to printing and afterwards.

At the research institute for Textile and clothing of the Hochschule Niederrhein you have now developed a solution which might lead the way to more energy efficient printing of textiles. What was your approach? Currently, conventional pigment printing is the dominant printing process in the textiles industry. This is followed by reactive printing using screen printing stencils. This process is elaborate, as the stencils need to be produced and the textile needs to undergo several further treatment steps both prior to printing and afterwards. In comparison, digital printing requires much less energy.

Hochschule Niederrhein, Research Institute for Textile and Clothing (FTB), D-41065 Mönchengladbach, www.hs-niederrhein.de