With all-virtual conference program in 2020, RISE continues its quest for the leading edge in material science for engineered fabrics


Research Innovation & Science for Engineered Fabrics Conference 2020
RISE 2020 will be presented in an all-virtual format, Sept. 29-30. Image: INDA

INDA, the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, in cooperation with The Nonwovens Institute (NWI) and North Carolina State University will present the 10th annual Research, Innovation & Science for Engineered Fabrics (RISE®) conference Sept. 29-30 in an all-virtual format. And while this year’s edition will not be in-person due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the program is not holding back on compelling presentations from leading innovators in material science.

“What RISE has always been about in my mind – and continues to be – is looking at what I call ‘the seams of technology,’” said Jim Loftus, long-time RISE committee member and principal at Loftus Technical Consulting. “It’s about technology that isn’t necessarily directly related to nonwovens, but certainly technology that could be related to nonwovens.

“Probably one of the most unique things about RISE is that it’s not just the same old, same old nonwovens technology,” said Loftus. “It’s new technology. It’s unique technology that may not be associated with nonwovens today, but through RISE, maybe, hopefully, it could be associated with nonwovens in the future.”

“Probably one of the most unique things about RISE is that it’s not just the same old, same old nonwovens technology,” said Loftus. “It’s new technology. It’s unique technology that may not be associated with nonwovens today, but through RISE, maybe, hopefully, it could be associated with nonwovens in the future.”

A major theme of the 2020 RISE conference will be sustainability developments in polymers, fibers, additives, and fabrics from sourcing and disposal to technology and strategies to enable reuse.

“Sustainability is something that’s going to continue [in our industry] indefinitely,” said Eva Welsh, North American market manager for the Evolon microfiber product line at Freudenberg Performance Materials. “I don’t know that we have an end game of trying to develop this better sustainable lifecycle. We all need this – we need it more now than ever, with the global health pandemic, and looking at [for example] reusable products for PPE. So I’m excited to hear about those topics.”

Developed for technology scouts and product developers, RISE is a two-day conference with an emphasis on highlighting visionary technologies, future-needs and market opportunities in engineered fabrics. The conference brings together subject matter experts from a wide range of interrelated markets and technology backgrounds to share ideas about what’s next in their respective focus areas. And with the conference being virtual this year, there is an opportunity for more people to attend.

“One of the supreme advantages of the virtual format is that, with the exception of some time zone differences, the attendance from international folks could be much higher this year,” said Lee Clapp, director of Market Development and Innovation for Technical Polymer Applications at Omya Inc.

“And even if they can’t watch every presentation live, because we’re doing them in a recorded format and because we’ll be recording the Q&A and some of the other sessions, they can have access to all this great content,” said Clapp. “So it’s a real hidden advantage for the situation that we’re dealing with right now.”

The RISE conference will also feature an Innovation Award presentation, recognizing outstanding technology within and on the periphery of the nonwovens industry that use advanced science and engineering principles to develop unique and elegant solutions to problems that, in turn, advance the use of nonwovens. This year’s RISE Innovation Award finalists are:
Leakproof absorbent nursing pads by FemTech at MAS Holdings Pvt Ltd – New and improved solution for managing breast milk leaks.
Pedilay med by Pedilay Care GmbH – Ready-to-use foot bandage that encloses the foot up to the ankle and supports medical treatments.
Spunbond high-efficiency filter by The Nonwovens Institute – New approach to creating a filtration media with the right efficiency at low pressure drop at high throughput.

In 2019, the RISE Innovation Award was presented to Surfaceskins, from Nonwovens Innovation & Research Institute for its innovative antibacterial door push pads and pull handles, engineered to kill germs and bacteria in between one user and the next, thus helping prevent the spread of healthcare associated infections.

For complete program information and the latest additions to the RISE program, visit riseconf.net.

* International Fiber Journal is owned by INDA, Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry (inda.org).