Solid presence for the BTMA British
Textile Machinery Association
Some 38 members of the British Textile Machinery Association
(BTMA) will exhibit at ITMA 2019 in Barcelona in June this year,
with the UK’s vast textile machinery heritage putting many of
them at the forefront of their fields.
Virtually all of today’s textile manufacturing processes –
from the carding, spinning, weaving, knitting, tufting and
nonwoven bonding of fibres through to advanced colouration,
finishing and printing techniques – can be traced back to
initial British patents and research and development that have
spread outwards across the globe.
Alan Little, Director, BTMA.
The eagerness of BTMA members to break new ground continues
to this day, and at ITMA 2019 visitors will learn that many are
actively involved in pioneering new technologies to assist
developments in a number of growing fields.
These include nonwovens, advanced medical materials,
automotive interiors, performance sportswear, intelligent
textiles and notably reinforcements for the highly automated
composites industry, where both robotics and Industry 4.0
machine networks are coming into their own.
BTMA member Cygnet Texkimp, for example, has recently
launched the world’s first robotic 3D winding machines, for the
creation of complex composite parts for the automotive and
aerospace markets in high volumes and at high speeds.
New developments in weaving systems for technical
applications are supplied by BTMA members including Vandewiele
UK and new member Optima 3D – a specialist in 3D weaving
systems. Advanced technologies for nonwovens are meanwhile
provided by, among others, Fibre Extrusion Technology (FET),
Garnett Controls and William Tatham, while Cobble leads the
field in tufting technology for high speed carpet production.
Automation, fabric inspection and advanced machine control
are other key fields of specialisation for a number of BTMA
members, including Dent Instrumentation, whose founder Geoffrey
Dent patented the very first contactless yarn sensor back almost
half a century ago. Today Dent partners with many of the leading
textile machinery manufacturers, including Barmag, Murata, Savio,
Schlafhorst and TMT and on average ships out 15,000 of its
sensor units each week.
Shelton Vision enjoys a leading position in the field of
automatic fabric inspection systems with its WebSpector, based
on four essential steps. Firstly, the system provides unrivalled
accuracy with real time defect classification and grading. Its
WebReview then generates a defct map to provide a commercial
overview. This is followed by the creation of a multiple cut
plan for yield operation, allowing the calculation of a precise
and cost-effective rate for high throughput cutting and rolling.
Cygnet Texkimp’s 3D Winder, a robot-mounted rotary
winding machine for creating complex composite
A good record in innovation and a reputation for high quality
go hand in hand, says BTMA Director Alan Little, and currently
around 80% of all of the sales achieved by BTMA member companies
“At a time when everyone wants everything faster, cheaper and
better, producers have to constantly raise their game when it
comes to quality assurance and supply chain efficiency,” he
adds. “Customers have become accustomed to quality and they
won’t compromise. As the pressure increases, standards are going
up, not down. BTMA member companies are world class in areas
such as testing, monitoring and process improvement, so they can
make a strong argument for becoming strategic partners to
companies in any part of the supply chain and there isn’t a
product or process anywhere that can’t be improved even further.
Another key selling point of UK-made machinery is after sales
service, which is backed up by historical and up-to-date
advanced process machinery. Come and talk to us about how we can
help your company at ITMA 2019 in Barcelona.”