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NIKE appears with some innovative activities

Nike is a major publicly traded sportswear and equipment supplier based in the United States. The company is headquartered near Beaverton, Oregon, in the Portland metropolitan area. It is the world’s leading supplier of athletic shoes, apparel and a major manufacturer of sports equipment. Recently Nike has developed or incorporated with some important technologies. These technologies include:

  • Water free dyeing
  • Seamless knitted shoe
  • Basketball jersey made from recycled plastic

Promoting Water free dyeing technology:

Nike has entered into a strategic partnership with DyeCoo Textile Systems B.V., a Netherlands-based machinery builder that has developed and built the first commercially available waterless textile dyeing machines that use CO2 instead of water.

The new partnership between Nike and DyeCoo comes after recent trials to dye polyester football shirts with the super-critical CO2 dyeing technology and is being considered a real ‘break-through’ moment for this technology. By using recycled carbon dioxide as the dyestuff carrrier, DyeCoo’s technology completely eliminates the use of water in the textile dyeing process. The name “DyeCoo” itself was inspired by the process of “dyeing” with “CO2.”

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Conventional textile dyeing requires substantial amounts of water. On average, an estimated 100 –150 litres of water is needed to process one kg of textile materials today. Industry analysts estimate that more than 39 million tonnes of polyester will be dyed annually by 2015. Nike says it expects DyeCoo’s supercritical fluid carbon dioxide, or “SCF” CO2 dyeing technology, to have a particularly positive impact in Asia, where much of the world’s textile dyeing occurs. As this technology is brought to scale, large amounts of water used in conventional textile dyeing will no longer be needed, nor will the commensurate use of fossil fuel-generated energy be required to heat such large sums of water. The removal of water from the textile dyeing process also eliminates the risk of effluent discharge, a known environmental hazard. The CO2 used in DyeCoo’s dyeing process is also reclaimed and reused.

Bangladesh Textile Today published a news article on “DyeCoo” technology back in January 2010 while the company received an award for this breakthrough technology.

Seamless running shoe:

Nike Inc. also has announced the launch of a revolutionary new running shoe which uses state-of-the-art integral knitting techniques to create a one piece upper which is virtually seamless. The Nike Flyknit upper is engineered for precision fit and aims to create the feeling of a second skin for runners.
The figure below represents the upper portion of the shoe. The Nike Flyknit upper uses a complex combination of modern flat knitting techniques to create a two dimensional component with built in support which can easily be manipulated into a three dimensional upper for attachment to a sole unit.

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The upper appears to use a combination of flechage (short row knitting), intarsia, jacquard, tuck stitches and stitch transfer techniques to impart shape and function, and employs a binding-off technique to close the selvedges. What appear to be braids are inserted to provide loops for lacing as well support at the sides of the shoe. The Flyknit is one of the best examples of commercial exploitation of the potential of flat knitting to date.

“Yarns and fabric variations are precisely engineered only where they are needed for a featherweight, formfitting and virtually seamless upper. With all the structure and support knitted in, the Nike Flyknit Racer’s upper and tongue weigh just 34 grams (1.2 ounces),” Nike said in a press release.

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The whole shoe weighs a mere 160g (5.6 ounces) for a size 9, 19% lighter than the Nike Zoom Streak 3, a shoe worn by first, second and third place athletes in the men’s marathon at the 2011 World Championships.

Nike has also created an everyday running shoe, the Nike Flyknit Trainer+, which at 220 grams or 7.7 ounces aims to bring the weight and fit benefits of Nike Flyknit to runners of all levels.

Recycled plastic jersey:      

                                
On February 21, Nike unveiled its lightest Hyper Elite Basketball Uniform made of technologically advanced textiles and recycled polyesters for the US national basketball team to wear in London Olympics 2012.

According to the company, the fabric of the men’s jersey is made with approximately 96% recycled polyester, so each Hyper Elite Basketball Uniform saves an average of 22 recycled plastic bottles. Meanwhile, the Hyper Elite Basketball Shorts feature 100% recycled polyester material. Function wise, the uniform is based on Nike Aerographics, an engineered fabric that is a passive cooling solution allowing greater design and graphic flexibility while creating mesh areas in a garment without adding seam.

The Hyper Elite Basketball Shorts, said to weigh in at 14 ounces lighter than the average shorts used by the players.

If anyone has any feedback or input regarding the published news, please contact: info@textiletoday.com.bd

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