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Better Chemistry

Textile chemical suppliers offer manufacturers value-added opportunities.


Better Chemistry Textile chemical suppliers offer manufacturers value-added opportunities. Demand for textile chemicals in the United States is expected to surpass $3 billion by next year, driven in large part by the increased use of high-value formulations that increase production efficiency and add value to fibers and fabrics.As the U.S. industry strives to compete in a global marketplace, against odds outlined time and again in these pages, the industry is examining virtually every facet of manufacturing to improve quality, efficiency and effectiveness.In this report, Textile Industries looks at some of the chemicals and companies that provide the means for more efficient manufacturing, whether in yarn and fabric preparation or in dyeing and finishing.Bayer Corp., Pittsburgh, last year acquired Sybron Chemicals Inc., a U.S.-based producer of polymers and specialty chemicals. This year, the company has announced significant worldwide investment in its polymers and coatings business.Bayer plans to invest $1.6 billion globally in its polymers segment, according to Werner Spinner, a member of the Board of Management of Germany-based Bayer AG, the U.S. companys parent. Of this total, $1.3 billion will be assigned to new production facilities, with the lions share going into expansion of polycarbonate capacities. The United States continues to hold a key position for Bayer, he said. With a U.S. polymers market share already totaling more than 30 percent, the company aims to invest another $250 million in the polymers segment on top of a recent expansion program that totaled $2 billion between 1996 and 2000.Polymers are and will remain a core business for Bayer, Spinner said. We will continue to build on our market leadership in the field of high-grade polymers. To this end, we will eliminate capacity bottlenecks and exploit every opportunity for regional growth, while at the same time analyzing and optimizing our portfolio and our cost structures.Among recent product additions for the company is a low-temperature bleaching (LTB) system that produces results comparable to those from conventional systems, but at lower temperatures and in less time. With conventional bleaching systems, typical process temperatures range from 200°F to 230°F, depending on the substrate and equipment used. But with Bayers LTB system, fabrics can be bleached effectively with hydrogen peroxide at significantly lower temperatures. The most significant benefit associated with the new LTB system is increased productivity, which is generated by significantly reducing the processing time by as much as 1.5 hours, according to the company. It takes less time to heat the process water, and the system has a neutral pH at the end of the bleaching stage, eliminating the need for rinse and neutralization baths.The system can be used to bleach a variety of fibers and fabrics, including cotton, viscose and nylon, as well as pH- and heat-sensitive blends. According to Bayer, it eliminates the need for hazardous chemicals (hypochlorite and hydrosulfite) and has been proven to improve fiber whiteness and fabric integrity.Bayer also offers Baysolex® RP and RP Assist, which comprise a new generation of aftersoaping agents for reactive dyeings. A special enzyme system removes color components from the unfixed dyestuff hydrolysate, saving water, energy and time, according to the company. As well, the new products maintain or improve fastness properties. The Baysolex enzyme system is primarily intended for deep shades, especially dyeings based on Reactive Black 5 (black and navy). The system comprises Baysolex RP, an enzyme component, and Baysolex RP Assist, a special process regulator. The products are generally added in the fourth or fifth rinse bath after reactive dyeing, but the exact method depends on the customers operating conditions. 
Seydel-WoolleyandCo. Inc., Pendergrass, Ga., has a full line of products for garment processing and dyeing; preparation chemicals for knits and wovens; and dyeing auxiliaries for indigo, cotton, polyester, acrylics, rayon, nylon, lyocell and blends. As well, the company features a full line of finishing chemicals including resins, polyvinyl acetates, and many hydrophobic and hydrophilic silicones. These silicones are used mostly as microemulsions, softeners and bases, as well as lubricants, antistats and buffers.Seydel-Woolley has recently invested more than $1 million in its laboratory to facilitate product development, according to Steve Adams, president. We have the people, the technical support and the equipment in place to anticipate and respond to the needs of our customers, he said.The companys Seycote SR-25R is a polyester dispersing and antiredeposition aid designed to provide maximum dye antiredeposition properties in garment wet processing and other washing and scouring systems. It can also be used as a dye-leveling agent when used with disperse dyes on polyester and blends.Seyco Finish ESA Liquid is a liquid film former based on a highly soluble and resoluble carboxilated starch of low viscosity. It was designed to be applied as a hand builder for fabrics made from cellulosic fibers, especially indigo-dyed denim. The product is used, as well, to stabilize elongation and shrinkage of finished fabrics.Seyco Antizone is a complex cationic liquid softener specifically designed to provide ozone- and ultraviolet (UV)-inhibition properties. According to Seydel-Woolley, it features excellent antiozonate/UV inhibition on denim, is non-yellowing and does not alter shades. It creates excellent hand and works well as a general-purpose softener for wovens or knits.A microemulsion silicone designed to provide an extremely soft hand and increase color vibrancy, Seyco Soft LM-5 will blossom dyed shades and make them appear darker. The product will not adversely affect crockfastness and will not cause spots.Seyco Scour LFB is a low-foaming, biodegradable wetter/scouring agent used for desizing, scouring, bleaching or dyeing. The product can be used with alpha amylase or cellulose enzyme with decreasing enzyme performance.Seydel-Woolleys Seyco Wetter 2EH provides detergent emulsification when used in preparation dyeing and finishing. It is an effective scouring agent with penetrating properties that make it useful for dyeing marginally prepared or difficult-to-wet-out goods. In continuous indigo dyeing of denim, it has excellent wetting with low foaming, according to the company. The wetter emulsifies wax and oils; is caustic-stable; can be used in exhaust or continuous dyeing; features instant penetration for dyeing; can be used for jet-dyeing applications on all fibers and most dyestuffs; and is excellent on indigo dye ranges in a sulfur dye mix or in finishing as a wetter in the sulfur dye mix.Seyco Wetter IFR is a nonionic wetter and scouring agent designed to remove loom oil from griege fabric. As well, the company says it performs well as an after-scour for dyed goods. The product works on natural and synthetic fabrics, and is readily soluble in water, resistant to hard water and metallic salts, and resistant to acids and alkalis.A one-piece finishing system from Seydel-Woolley, Seyco Lube YLW, contains a nonionic wetter, an ester-based sanforizing lubricant and a polyethylene softener. This combination enhances hand and provides excellent wetting and fiber-to-fiber-to-metal lubrication.Seyco Lube SR is a nonionic-based lubricant that prevents streaks in denim-dyed garments. It can also be used with fiber-reactive, direct or acid dyes. The product can increase load size without streaking and can help prevent broken stitches and nicks on heavily abraded garments.Seyco LEV HTP, a leveling agent for disperse dyes, is widely used on polyester and polyester blends dyed on jet-dyeing machines at elevated temperatures in the 240°F to 265°F range.Other offerings from Seydel-Woolley include Seyco HB-55, a milky-white polymeric emulsion that builds hand and provides dimensional fabric stability to knits; Seyco Fix Right, a non-formaldehyde fixing agent for direct and fiber-reactive dyeings that increases washfastness, maximizes wetfastness and prevents migration during drying operations; Seycozyme NEC, a buffered neutral enzyme blend designed to provide the same properties of liquid acid or engineered acid cellulase enzymes without the deleterious effects on fabric strength sometimes found with acid cellulases; Seycozyme L-2020, a high-strength, bio-engineered cellulase enzyme system for both textile and industrial use; and Seycozyme HCE, a high-strength, acid-stable cellulase enzyme effective on cotton and all natural and cellulosic fibers and blends.Additionally, the company offers Seyco Sperse SPW, a concentrated mixture of low-molecular-weight polyesters and other polymeric dispersing and antiredeposition agents; Seyco Defoamer 2341, which is a 40-percent active non-silicone defoamer for textile dyeing; Seyco Defoamer AJA, a 100-percent active non-silicone defoamer; Seyco Desize 2K, a 4X-strength thermal-stable alpha amylase effective in removing starch; Seyco Buffer IDB, which is designed to provide the optimum pH for indigo dyeing to give consistent shades in both rigid and wash-down shades; Seyco Buffer 480, a concentrated liquid buffer that maintains pH from 4.5 to 5.0; Seyco Antimigrant 347, a liquid, sodium alginate-based product for use in the prevention of dye migration; and Seyco Cat MC, a catalyst for thermosetting glyoxal reactants based on magnesium chloride.  Another company, Cognis Corp., (formerly Henkel Textile Technology), Charlotte, N.C., offers chemical solutions that span the entire process chain from spinning preparation for fiber and yarn production; through pretreatment, dyeing and printing; to the finishing of the end product.
Chlorine fastness evaluation on 100-percent cotton towels.1.5-percent owb fixative (Cognis Chromaset CBF) was applied. Towels were dried at 300°F4A Wash Test with chlorine was performed at 160°F.Courtesy of Cognis Corp.Among the specific products manufactured by the company is Syntergent® APW, a low-foam scouring agent and penetrant designed for use on natural and synthetic fibers and blends. It provides detergent emulsification and wetting properties when used in preparation, dyeing and finishing. Syntergent SL CONC provides the same properties for use in batch and continuous preparation of knit fabric. Syntergent TER-1, as well, is a scouring agent and penetrant for use on natural and synthetic fibers and blends. During continuous indigo dyeing of denim, the product imparts wetting properties without causing excessive foaming. Securon® 540 from Cognis is a bleaching and dyeing assistant designed specifically to prevent the formation of silicate scale in alkaline bleach baths containing sodium silicate. In addition, it inhibits the formation of insoluble fats and waxes from cotton and prevents their precipitation on the manufactured goods. Stabilol® HCN is a multifunctional bleaching assistant for use in continuous and batch operations in both cotton and polyester/cotton woven goods and knits. Stabilol HCN eliminates the need for silicate in the system.Other products offered by Cognis include: Osimod® CLD, a dyebath dispersant and leveling agent that can be used to disperse oligomer and prevent redeposition on the fabric; Chromasist® 1487-A, a dispersant and leveling agent that minimizes dye agglomeration without causing excessive foaming; Chromaset® CBF, a chlorine barrier that has anionic ionicity and no reportable levels of phenol or formaldehyde compounds; Nonax® 1166, a durable polymeric antistat; and Foamaster® 340, a non-silicone defoamer designed for use in jet- or pressure-dyeing machines.CHT R. Beitleich (formerly Catawba-Charlab Inc.), Charlotte, has introduced Sarabid LDR, a dispersing agent with sequestering and leveling properties for improving the solubility of reactive dyestuffs. The product features low foaming and good salt stability and is suitable for exhaust or continuous dyeing.CHT R. Beitleich also manufactures a variety of softeners and lubricants; dyeing auxiliaries; printing auxiliaries, binders and block-outs; binders; coatings; pretreatment products; and colors and pigments.

November 2001