Emerging Tyvek Material Industry Spearheaded by Local UK Businesses

medical tyvekWhen most people think strong durable material the first thing that comes to mind is kevlar.  Kevlar and many other protective fabrics involve thousands of closely knit strings or “pieces” of cloth of fabric that when condensed form a protective shield that wouldn’t otherwise not be attainable by just using one material source.  So in other words the aggregate total of all the pieces of fabric together provide it with the strength needed to facilitate industrial applications.

Dupont, one of the leading Tyvek manufacturers described Tyvek material as, “Tyvek brand protective material is a family of tough, durable spunbonded olefin sheet products that are stronger than paper and more cost-effective and versatile than fabrics. It has a higher strength-to-weight ratio than paper, and absorbs little or no moisture” — which is true, it’s never all sweaty when I pull it out of my pocket. The site adds that Tyvek is strong and rip-resistant, as you can see when I try to rip this wallet. And believe me, I’ve really tried). It’s also made of environmentally responsible material.”

While Tyvek has been traditionally used for military and medical applications it has also become increasingly popular in commercial applications. Even clothing manufacturers have started using Tyvek technology to create clothing and protective materials that have everyday applications.  A local manufacturer in the UK started printing wallets on Tyvek material.

“Wallets printed using a laser printer are much more durable than ink-jet prints because laser printouts are essentially waterproof. Laser toner isn’t ink! It’s plastic that has been melted onto the page using heat. You can make your laser-printed wallets even more durable by sealing them in bags, laminating them, or by printing on a synthetic waterproof paper paper such as Revlar.

Ink-jet prints can be extremely delicate. The ink will fade over time, especially when subjected to bright light. Even minuscule amounts of water can cause ink to bleed so much that the printout is destroyed altogether.”

 

medical tyvekWhile wallets may be the first step in casual Tyvek printing the industry still has a long way to go as Doranix’s Chris Lange explains, “Tyvek applications have been traditionally limited due to the size and complexity of the printers.  The industry hasn’t adapted Tyvek printers for civilian use because up to now we have only needed to use them for medical technology and other devices. In the future we hope that we can adapt Tyvek technology for a wide assortment of civilian products providing superior products and better protection.”

From the video below you can see that Tyvek printers still need to adapt a more compact design in order to make it onto the mainstream European market.