Last year, Sympatex Technologies, a Munich-based producer of high-tech functional membranes, laminates and textiles for clothing, footwear and technical application, undertook to ensure that within the next five years, at least half of the raw materials needed for its functional laminates would not only derive from the circular textile loop but themselves would also be recyclable. Moreover, the company is aiming for this figure to reach 100% by 2030.
Sympatex recently took an important step in that direction. Specifically, it has announced that as early as this year, it will be transitioning to renewably-sourced materials derived from various organic waste streams for over 25% of the raw materials used to produce its waterproof, windproof, and breathable membranes for sports applications.
The company has worked with its long-standing raw material partner, DSM, on the realisation of a mass-balanced bio-based Arnitel, a thermoplastic elastomer, that would be suitable for use in its membranes.
Since the launch of the first mass balanced bio-based Arnitel at the previous K Show, DSM has worked continuously on increasing the bio-based content of the end product. The developed solution enables Sympatex to easily shift to a more sustainable solution with a lower carbon footprint without having to requalify materials. It is the first commercial application of bio-based mass-balanced Arnitel in the sports and apparel market, said DSM. The end product contains more than 25% bio-based content by weight.
“We are seeing that partnerships such as ours with DSM accelerate the progress of our collective journey to a more sustainable world,” said Rüdiger Fox, CEO Sympatex Technologies.
DSM is currently working to make available mass balanced bio-based grades of their specialty materials with increasingly higher bio-based content by weight (up to 75- 100%) in the coming few years, to drive the ‘industry’s transition from fossil-based to renewable resources’, said Caroline Mittlerlehner, Vice President Specialties DSM Engineering Materials .
This effort is particularly focussed on bio-based mass balanced Stanyl PA46, Akulon PA6 and Arnitel TPE. The company already offers its EcoPaXX PA410 in a 100% bio-based content grade based on a combination of bio-based and bio-based mass-balanced feedstocks.