German-Dutch Innovation – New recycling process for used clothing made from blended fibres

An innovative, independent development and engineering company, based in Mönchengladbach, Germany – imat-uve –  is working with a German-Dutch project consortium on an industrial solution for the recycling of old clothes made from mixed fibres. The recycled yarns and woven fabrics made from them, are primarily intended for use in the automotive industry.

Old textiles are a valuable raw material that can be easily reused. Research shows that in Germany alone 1.01 million tons of textiles, old clothes and new garments that have never been worn end up in the trash every year (source: BSVE). The company indicates that until now it has not been possible to process these old textiles in a high-quality way; most of them are burned or processed to low quality nonwovens. The problem seems to be that in most cases the textiles are not made of pure but mixed fibres.

This is now about to change, the company declares. The engineering and development service provider is developing – together with a consortium of German and Dutch partner companies – a mechanical recycling process that recycles used textiles made from blended fibres for use in vehicle interiors.