The Industrial Revolution, which took place from the 18th to 19th centuries, was a period during which predominantly agrarian, rural societies in Europe and America became industrial and urban. Prior to the Industrial Revolution, which began in Britain in the late 1700s, manufacturing was often done in people’s homes, using hand tools or basic machines. Industrialization marked a shift to powered, special-purpose machinery, factories and mass production. The iron and textile industries, along with the development of the steam engine, played central roles in the Industrial Revolution, which also saw improved systems of transportation, communication and banking. While industrialization brought about an increased volume and variety of manufactured goods and an improved standard of living for some, it also resulted in often grim employment and living conditions for the poor and working classes.
But what does the term "industrialization of the textile industry" mean today?
Today's fast speed of life determins the fast pace of everything and above all is the textile industry. "Fashion" is extremely time sensitive term and the changes are rapid with the rapid development of technologies, methods and technics of production of goods.
Textile engineering nowadays is shattering decades-old stereotypes of a labor-intensive, factory-based industry in which men and women toiled over looms and spinning jacks. The clang of the early production machinery has been replaced by a computer-driven enterprise that is making significant contributions to fields ranging from athletic performance equipment to human health and rehabilitation.
Among other innovations, textile engineers are developing high-tech fibers that are used as substrates in biomedical applications, as well as materials that aid in energy conservation and pollution control.
While the textile industry in some parts of the world is labor-intensive, new technology has advanced manufacturing processes in many markets. Industrial looms today incorporate air-jets to weave at speeds of 2,000 picks per minute - in 1980, 200 picks per minute has been considered fast.
Computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing have also impacted textile production, as companies seek efficiency gains to remain profitable and competitive. Machine designs have become increasingly sophisticated and precise, enabling innovations in specialty fabrics used in the biomedical field. In addition to substrates that are used to rehabilitate damage to the human heart and vascular system, other textile innovations include Dupont's Lycra, a specialty material used in compression pants worn by competitive bicyclists.
Textiles are also showing up in road construction and environmental applications. There is much activity today that extends far beyond clothing and home furnishings.
The modern nanotechnology has the potential to make major contributions to material innovations going forward. Many belive that a breakthrough technology would be the cost-effective development of nanofibers.
Nanotechnology is already driving innovations in this field. Nanoscience is bringing advances in lightweight materials and durable materials, and is providing keys to understanding methods by which less energy can be used in textile design, fabrication, and manufacturing. With almost no doubt we can say that the fabrics of the future will be nanotechnology-based.
To bring high-value innovations to the marketplace, the professionals and especially designers involved with the textile industry today require training in areas ranging from the classic disciplines of materials science and thermodynamics to specialties like polymeric biomaterials engineering, mechanics of tissue implants, and composite structures.
Educating themselves, training and experiencing work with new technologies, new fibers and new fabrics is Dare2Wow's aim for everyone interested in the textile industry.