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Reducing environmental footprint through nonwoven fabrics in shoes

Tuesday, November 09, 2021 12:00 AM    Views : 61by:Rachel R. Perez, DOST-STII

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Photo Courtesy: DOST-PTRI

A comfortable and an environment friendly shoe insole was developed by the Philippine Textile Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST-PTRI) through the “Diversification of Philippine Textiles Through Nonwoven Innovations R&D Program” or the Nonwoven Innovations Program, using natural textile fiber-based nonwovens and knitted and woven fabrics.

Prototypes have already been developed using pineapple leaf fiber needle punched nonwovens, with combination of two or more layers: the upper lining, the lignocellulosic-based nonwoven textile and the optional backing support. The middle nonwoven layer acts as the cushioning component of the shoe insole that provides comfort as well as protection to the feet of the wearer.

The Intellectual Property (IP) for the shoe insole has already been filed and discloses a desired embodiment that is made from 100% natural textile fibers, from the linings to the nonwoven.

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Photo courtesy of DOST-PTRI

Because of this new technology, a partnership with Creative Definitions was also forged to use the developed nonwovens in the insoles of their own line of footwear, thus supporting the objective to bridge the gap between research and industry.

To put more value to the product using SmarTex technologies, DOST-PTRI is currently in the process of improving the technology with added features like odor control and antimicrobial finishing. Despite being in its initial stages, it is already showing potential as a competitive option in the footwear industry.

Meanwhile, the Nonwoven Innovations Program of DOST-PTRI aims to utilize local natural textile fibers from different sources such as pineapple leaf, abaca, bamboo, and banana in the production of nonwoven textiles for various industrial use  for automotive, filtration, and alternative leather applications.

Amazing! Right?

This natural textile fiber-based insole is just one of the technologies to be featured by DOST-PTRI during the celebration of the 2021 National Science and Technology Week (NSTW). There will also be more exciting products and informative activities to be featured by different agencies and regional offices that include innovations in agriculture (soilless gardening); industrial automation, robotics, and artificial intelligence; 3D printing technology; herbal drugs against COVID-19; the Hybrid Electric Road Train; nuclear applications in medicine; complementary foods and the enhanced ‘nutribun’ to curb malnutrition; and many more that you would not imagine can be done by our own scientists and researchers.

The one-week festivity of science and technology carries the theme, “Agham at Teknolohiya: Tugon sa Hamon ng Panahon’’, that will happen virtually from 22-28 November 2021

Want to know more?

Visit the NSTW website at http://nstw.dost.gov.ph/. You can also check and follow the NSTW Facebook page at https://web.facebook.com/nstwdost.

S & T Trivia

" Juanito A. Simon, a US-educated and -trained metallurgist who smoothly speaks Kapampangan, formulated the Per'tua motor lubricant internationally known as Tribotech (www.tribotech.com). This product is now used by McDonnell Douglas in AH-65 Apache combat support helicopters, Boeing autoclaves and giant ovens which bake vital aircraft parts. "

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