Industrial Fabrics Foundation announces Innovation Award recipient

The Industrial Fabrics Foundation (IFF) recently announced the recipient of the 2013 IFF Innovation Award. Foundation representatives announced the innovation award during the Specialty Fabrics Expo 2013 and Advanced Textiles Conference & Trade Show, Oct. 23–25, 2013, in Orlando, Fla.

Polartec LLC of Lawrence, Mass. is the recipient of the 2013 IFF Innovation Award. The company won for a project called Polartec® Alpha®. Polartec was one of 19 entries from 18 companies around the world, and was awarded a prize of $5,000. The top 10 entries will also be featured in the February issue of Specialty Fabrics Review.

Unlike down and existing synthetic insulation batting, Polartec Alpha is a highly stable layer allowing for the use of more open and breathable fabrics on the outer and inner layers of “puffy” style garments. As a result, Polartec Alpha provides active warmth that allows air exchange for breathability and comfort in more dynamic situations. Classic puffy garments require “down-proof” or high-density woven layers that create a vapor barrier. Although they work well in static conditions, these classic puffy garments trap moisture inside the garment during even minimal activity.

The purpose of the IFF Innovation Award is to inspire companies from all over the world to not only come up with great ideas, but to make them happen. IFF wants to tell the stories of great specialty fabric manufacturers and suppliers who have challenged the norm and succeeded and who are leading the way to unchartered territories. IFF wants these companies and their stories to inspire others in the industry, acting as benchmarks for others to surpass.

Innovation is the heart of creating a specialty fabrics industry that will inspire technology in the 21st century. The IFF Innovation Award transforms that idea into action. Join IFF as it fosters the next-generation of specialty fabrics industry innovators.

The IFF is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to education and research in specialty fabrics. For more information, please contact Andrew Aho, IFF managing director, at +1 651 225 6907 or email

About IFAI
The Industrial Fabrics Association International is the world's leading and longest-running specialty fabrics trade organization since 1912, with nearly 1,800 member companies located in 55 countries. IFAI publishes seven market-specific magazines and organizes global industry events.