News & Insights | Technical Textiles & Non-Wovens

RESEARCH COLLABORATIONS IN ADVANCED TEXTILES AND GLOBAL HARMONY

Published: March 8, 2022
Author: SESHADRI RAMKUMAR

By: Seshadri Ramkumar, Professor, Texas Tech University

(March 7, 2022, Lubbock, USA)–Unity and harmony are in much need as we witness distress in some parts of the world.

Research and graduate education are international, and it celebrates global unity and understanding. On March 5, the Nonwovens and Advanced Materials Laboratory at Texas Tech University, USA, to show solidarity among many nationals, and as a mark of celebrating James Ayodeji’s successful defense of Ph.D. on “Face Coverings as a Countermeasure to COVID-19,” hosted a dinner involving students of a few nations. James is from Nigeria. Such small acts of showcasing unity and understanding of different culture is valuable in times of stress.

Since the initiation of research in advanced cotton products, nonwovens and technical textiles in the Advanced Materials Laboratory at Texas Tech, students, and visitors from many parts of the world like Germany, China, Japan, Nigeria, United States, Bangladesh, and India have visited and collaborated in many efforts. Ongoing collaborations with many Institutes in India for over 20-years have strengthened India’s technical textiles sector. This effort has enabled India to be self-sufficient in the manufacture of PPE during COVID-19 times. A high point has been the collaboration between USA-based Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry (INDA) and Texas Tech University in hosting a major nonwovens training workshop and “Link with India,” business conclave in the mid-2000s in Mumbai, India.

Notable visitors to the laboratory’s events include United States’ Congressmen, U.S. Department of Defense scientists, Ministry of Textiles-Government of India’s senior officials, delegation of officers from the Cotton Corporation of India, business leaders, scientists, to name a few. In the early 2000, a member of the trade delegation representing the textile sector under the leadership of former Prime Minister of India, Honorable Atal Bihari Vajpayee ji visited the laboratory and Lubbock to know firsthand about the High Plains’ cotton sector and the technical textiles research at Texas Tech University. Leading cotton industry leaders from India say, Mr. Suresh Kotak of Kotak group of companies and the former R & D head of the leading textile machinery manufacturer, Coimbatore-based Lakshmi Machine Works, Ltd., have extended their visits to the laboratory.

Ongoing collaboration with Amit Kapoor, President of Chantilly-based First Line Technology, LLC is leading to new applications for the nonwoven decontamination wipe, “FiberTect.” FiberTect’s commercial success showcases the importance of industry-academia collaboration. In a similar vein, collaboration with South India-based Jayalakshmi Textiles, a leading cotton spinning industry has resulted in cotton-based sustainable oil absorbent to contain oil spill issues.

Research in the laboratory focuses on advanced textiles to protect the environment and save human lives, finding new and industrial applications for cotton, nanofibers, and sustainable textile-finishing technologies to name a few.

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