Virtual Textile Design for an Integrated Product Policy

Dr. A. Wiegmann und Priv.-Doz. Dr. A. Latz*

Contribution to block 7 (new and innovative materials and developments)
of TECHTEXTIL Frankfurt (2003)

Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Mathematics (ITWM)
Kaiserslautern, Germany

Technical textiles produced from artificial fibres (here: Nonwovens)
offer innumerable possibilities for the improvement of the final
product's properties by the variation of the parameters with respect
to fibre, production and processing.  It is especially interesting
with respect to recycling processes, e. g., in the automobile sector,
to achieve desired properties by the use of one single raw material
(here: polyester). Thus, it is necessary to understand the
three-dimensional structure of the Nonwoven and to know about the
influence of geometric variations (e. g., weights per unit area, fibre
orientation, form of the fibre,..) on the properties of the final
product. In cooperation with appropriate partners, the Fraunhofer
Institute for Industrial Mathematics has developed the methods for a
three-dimensional image acquisition of textiles and a
three-dimensional image analysis for the extraction of appropriate
parameters, the three-dimensional modelling of textiles, and the
simulation of properties such as flow resistance, tortuosity
etc. These methods have been successfully applied within several
projects with industrial partners. It is possible, for example, to
determine the fleece structure for the inside roof lining of a car
with specific acoustic absorption properties by simulation and
automatic optimization. The result is a roof lining with the desired
acoustic absorption which helps to save gas due to its low weight and
can easily be recycled because it only consists of one single
material. The design required extremely few prototypes and
measurements, and the simulation method can react very fast to new
requirement variations of the roof lining nonwovens can be regarded as
the most difficult case due to their random structure. Thus, the
application of the developed technology to layings, wovens, and knits
represents a simplification of the method.

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