Royal DSM announces the introduction by Toyota Tsusho of a new generation of high-performance membranes for clothing made from its Arnitel® VT, a flexible thermoplastic polyester-based elastomer. The new membranes contain no perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs), and are 100 percent recyclable, breathable and waterproof in all circumstances, despite being only a few microns thick.
Brands in outdoor clothing are looking for ways to make garments that offer the right performance and are comfortable for the wearer. At the same time, they want to use materials and processes that have the lowest possible impact on the environment. The spotlight is currently focused on avoiding the use of PFCs, found in PTFE-based membranes.
With Arnitel VT, moisture vapor can pass from the inside to the outside of the garment, but the membranes are 100 percent waterproof, so they keep the wearer comfortable and dry. Arnitel VT does not rely on perforations to make it breathable. Perforated membranes can have their waterproofness compromised when they are washed or come into contact with liquids such as alcohols or fuels. Perforations also reduce the strength of the membrane, making it easier to rip. Perforations can get clogged too, causing the membrane to lose its breathability.
Arnitel VT has been used for many years in membranes for clothing. Because it is not perforated, it acts as a barrier not only to liquids, but also to bacteria and viruses. For this reason, Arnitel VT is used in surgical gowns with the highest level of protection.
The collaboration on this recyclable product has also led to a drastic reduction of the carbon footprint in the production chain, compared to that for PTFE-based membranes.
Royal DSM is a global science-based company active in health, nutrition and materials. Toyota Tsusho is a global supplier of high-tech functional materials for clothing and footwear. The new membrane was launched in August.