Why is your treatment better than traditional "wet" padding?
The GTT dry finishing technology offers several major benefits over padding:
What does it cost?
GTT supplies the chemical package required for dry finishing. The chemical cost is close to the cost of traditional C6 finishing, but has better performance. Besides the chemical cost, there is essentially no wastewater cost, lower energy cost and lower capital equipment cost. The net benefit is overall lower cost to the customer. The exact cost varies with the treatment and fabric.
If the performance of the GTT finishing technology is better, why not charge more for that?
We have been asked that a lot. We also have a goal of environmental leadership and we do not want the technology cost to impact that goal.
Why does the GTT product perform better in laundry durability?
First, it doesn't make any sense to create a hydrophobic finish starting with water! The hydrophobic monomers used in the GTT technology dissolve into the fabric (and are nonpolar, so they will not dissolve in water). Part of our process involves polymerization: when these monomers polymerize, they become part of the fabric. Yet, the hand and appearance are unchanged. We also use crosslinkers to strengthen the covalent bond between the hydrophobic polymers and the fabric. The result is unprecedented laundry durability - with no change to the fabric hand or appearance.
Are there other dry finishing technologies currently in production?
No - not to our knowledge. GTT will be the first to provide a cost-effective, dry finishing technology for the textile industry.
Is the GTT dry finishing technology protected?
We have several patent applications including PCT patent applications and national phase filings that are pending. Contact us for details.
Is a license required?
Yes - the technology is patent pending. We license our customers and for the early adopters (i.e., customers who buy our chemical and use our finishing technology during calendar year 2016 the license is free as long as it is used. For those customers who start using our technology in 2017 and thereafter, a license fee will be charged. We also license our chemical suppliers and our equipment suppliers.
What kind of hazardous chemicals are used in wet finishing?
Unfortunately, a significant amount of hazardous chemicals are used in padding processes for wet finishing. C8 fluorocarbons are still be used, despite their ban from being manufactured in the US and Europe. It is puzzling why C6 is considered to be "ok", given its similarity to C8. C10 is used by some unscrupulous companies claiming their treatment is "C8-free", despite the ban on C10 as well. Telomer alcohols are for emulsifiers in wet finishing - their vapor pressure next to the skin raises significant worry, as human skin easily transports vapor. Urea/formaldehyde resins are used for permanent press treatment. Isocynates are used to "bond" C6 resins to fabric. Nanoparticles provide many desirable attributes, but their passage through skin is not one of those. We use no nanoparticles. The list is almost endless. Consumers are safe with our product. We wear it ourselves. Our blend is partially derived from Nature with about 40% natural products. Nature invented polymerization, after all.
How is your dry finishing different from plasma finishing?
Our finishing technology is similar to plasma finishing, but thermal curing far outperforms plasma curing. Also, plasma is much more expensive to operate, the capital equipment costs much more and it does not provide any performance improvement over our thermal curing method. Thermal curing can be done at high pressure. Plasma cannot be done at high pressure. One atmosphere pressure is about the highest pressure a plasma can operate.
Plasma cures a monomer coating by generating free radicals in the gas. The free radicals produced by the plasma impinge the coated fabric and cause polymerization. But a plasma cannot penetrate any deeper than the surface. So, you only get a surface polymer film. That is why plasma finishing has such poor laundry durability.
We generate free radicals for the polymerization by adding a chemical to the monomer mixture that decomposes once a “trigger” temperature is reached. Because that chemical is already blended into the chemistry, and because heat penetrates the fabric, we can polymerize deep into the fabric. That greatly improves both laundry durability and abrasion resistance – because the treatment is embedded well beyond the surface.
When we “push” the chemical treatment into the fabric by increasing the gas pressure, then the polymerization goes even deeper into the fabric. That is one reason our treatment far outperforms plasma! The other reason is our unique and proprietary chemistry.
Please send us your questions! We will be happy to post them and answer them here.