23/08/2015 — auf Deutsch lesen

Flat-knit welding

“Fading Crystals” by Theresa Brinkmann Photo: Tim Ilskens, 2015

“Fading Crystals” by Theresa Brinkmann Photo: Tim Ilskens, 2015


The making-up of flat-knitted garments is a costly and labour-intensive process. The articles are often very bulky and heavy – and, although ultrasonic welding is already used in the manufacture of circular-knitted garments, there is currently a lack of empirical data regarding the possible applications of this technology in the making-up of flat-knitted garments.

The research work at the Hochschule Niederrhein University of Applied Sciences in Mönchengladbach aims to acquire fundamental insight into the feasibility of ultrasonic welding in the making-up of flat-knitted garments. Technical implementation is being investigated using a variety of different seam patterns and seam constructions.

Systematic relationships between materials, textures, and welding parameters should shed some light on when which ultrasound-technology process (cut and seal, or welding) can be best applied, and how the structure of the weld seam can be selected to achieve the desired results. In principle, it is technologically possible to weld flat-knitted fabrics provided that the material has sufficient thermoplastic content and the machine settings are adjusted for the structure and volume of the knitted fabric. This is also shown by the realisation of the two models.

Following the conclusion of this research project, there will still be no definitive answer as to whether ultrasonic welding represents a genuine alternative to sewing in the future. High levels of investment into comprehensive research are still required before ultrasonic welding processes can become established within the apparel industry as a sustainable joining technology. At present, ultrasonic welding technology will not replace sewing, but will increasingly complement it.

[ www.hs-niederrhein.de]