James Park, the ultimate dyeing expert

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On the eve of seven years completion of Bangladesh Textile Today, if it looks back it would see great contributions of some individuals. No doubt that most of them are renowned and has contributed a lot for the global textile industry as they did for Bangladesh Textile Today. BTT is honoured to be able to publish their research outcomes and valuable understandings on different contemporary issues. And so herewith the magazine wants to pay its gratitude to some of those regular contributors in this section. And the section must be started with James Park. His life is as important to study (especially for the young researchers) as his articles are. Through last seven years BTT has published number of those articles. And here goes a brief on the man behind those creations.

jimparkJames (Jim) Park was born in Selkirk (Scotland) in 1937 and is a direct descendant of Mungo Park who discovered the River Niger. Jim gained his first degree in textile chemistry and dyeing from the Heriot-Watt University in Galashiels whilst employed as a chemist with a textile spinning and weaving group with major interests in dyeing and finishing, reaching the position of assistant chief chemist. He then moved to Manchester where he did three years research on felt processing and dyeing. This enabled him to study at the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST) and obtain the Associateship of the Society of Dyers and Colourists (ASDC). Apart from a four-year period when he was technical manager and chief chemist with a major vertical textile manufacturer, Jim then spent fourteen years developing, establishing and managing dyeing operations. He was particularly involved with package dyeing processes for yarns produced from all the major fibre types. Over the years, he built a successful technical team which developed the concept of using parallel sided dye packages (PSDP) together with package dyeing of carpet yarn. State-of-the-art package dyeing operations were established which included totally automated operation, including the use of colour measurement technology. These operations were eventually achieving 98.5% right-first-time (RFT) production. (Some of this work has been described recently in Textile Today – December 2013).

In 1982, Jim having completed nearly 30 years in the textile industry, which included periods in major positions in research, technical and general management, established an independent consultancy practice. The early success of the company was based upon providing cost-effective technical services and consultancy supported by modern laboratory facilities. These included automated weighing and solution preparation, dyebath preparation and controlled laboratory dyeing equipment. A unique service was established to provide custom-built database (calibration dyeings) for computer colour matching (CCM) systems. Worldwide consultancy followed for many companies including UNIDO projects in countries such as Albania, Bangladesh, China, Egypt and Pakistan. This has led to improved laboratory facilities, process improvements and right-first-time dyeing production in excess of 95%, and as high as 98.5% in every form of dyeing and printing process. Computer colour matching expertise within Park Associates has enabled companies to produce colour formulations below a colour difference to target ΔE (CMC) = 0.8 or less, within an average of only 1.5 laboratory attempts.

In addition to their consultancy services, Park Associates added mini bulk dyeing for palette generation and the production of dyed, textile colour standards for retailers. Other work on colour with Datacolor International created a master colour library of 64,000 evenly-spaced colours. This led to the creation in 1993, by Jim’s son Kevin, of the concept of ‘engineered textile colour standards’ (ETCS) which is the basis of distance colour communication required to support the long supply chains of major retailers. The company is currently heavily involved in promoting ‘sustainable technology’.

Jim has published over 200 papers and 20 books and has been privileged to work and lecture in Bangladesh. He is a silver, gold and centenary medallist and Fellow of the Society of Dyers and Colourists (FSDC), a Fellow of the Textile Institute (FTI), a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA) and a Fellow of the British Institute of Management (FBIM). In addition to Jim, the principals of Park Associates are Walter Boyd and Jim’s son Kevin – all being graduates of Heriot-Watt.

You can email to Jim: parkdy@globalnet.co.uk

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