The global textile industry is a huge part of the world economy. Imports and exports of textiles increase each year and show no signs of slowing down as consumer demand for clothing and other apparel continues to grow. Cotton and wool tend to be the most exported textiles, but yarns, fabrics and apparel are also notable. Even developing countries have multi-milliondollar textile industries and the factories where textiles are produced provide critical jobs to the communities they are in. In 2016, the United States alone shipped out $74.4 billion worth of fiber and filament, textiles and apparel.
The production and storage of textiles is an area where humidification is critical. The atmospheric conditions in factories, specifically temperature and humidity, are important during the manufacturing of textile yarns and fabrics. Properties such as dimensions, weight, tensile strength, elasticity and rigidity are all influenced by these factors. For example, the strength of viscose is reduced when relative humidity goes up, as well as generation of static electricity across all textiles when humidity is low.
Factories without air-conditioning or a humidification system often find that they encounter production difficulties when embroidering, weaving and spinning yarn. This is due to breakage and high-static electricity levels that occur when the relative humidity is not optimal. When relative humidity is increased from 60 to 70% during storage and processing, wool shows a 15% increase in elasticity. This leads to far less breakage, meaning less wasted yarn, better efficiencies and a higher quality final product. Preventing moisture loss during processing and storage also reduces weight loss from 4% to .5% in textile products. When factories are consistently seeing a lower quality product or weight loss due to less than optimal humidification conditions, margins can fall significantly. Koolfog humidification systems alter the relative humidity in small and large-scale textile environments.