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Dyeing Printing & Finishing

HueMetrix Develops Real-Time Dye Monitoring Device

HueMetrix, Raleigh, N.C., has developed a device that it reports will monitor dyeing in real time, make the dyeing process more environmentally friendly, reduce production costs and decrease time to market, among other benefits.

The company was founded by North Carolina State University (NCSU) College of Textile faculty members Brent Smith, Ph.D.; Warren Jasper, Ph.D.; Keith Beck, Ph.D.; and Michael Zapata.

"One of the biggest economic losses in textiles is when you dye fabric and it doesn't come out the right color and it has to be corrected," Smith said. "Environmentally, it's expensive, it makes the materials more expensive and it costs you time, which is a big factor in getting to market."

According to the company, the new system's software measures in real time once a minute the amount of color in the dye bath, which helps determine how much dye has moved to the fabric. This information is sent to a central control unit, which makes any necessary adjustments.

HueMetrix currently has two prototypes in use. The company is developing a bulletproof system for daily textile plant use that should be ready in one to two years.

Development assistance for the new dyeing device was provided by the High Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialization Center located within the university's College of Management.

February 2005