YKK announces the release of its new DynaPel™ water-repellant zipper featuring GTT EMPEL® technology. Designed to be compatible with garment recycling systems, DynaPel™ uses EMPEL® technology instead of the standard PU film to achieve its water repellency. The lack of a PU film helps remove one of the barriers of textile-to-textile recycling of performance apparel by eliminating the urethane material, which presents challenges to garment recycling processes.
“DynaPel™ is a valuable addition to our growing collection of fasteners designed for circular systems,” said Terry Tsukumo, Vice President, Product Strategy Division, Global Sales Headquarters, YKK Corporation. “By employing EMPEL® technology, we can achieve the robust water protection expected from YKK® products while eliminating the challenges that PU poses to recycling systems.”
Conventional chemical and mechanical garment recycling systems cannot process the polyurethane film commonly used on water-repellent zippers, necessitating the removal of zippers from garments before recycling. This additional processing step often deters recyclers from accepting garments with PU zippers, resulting in unnecessary waste.
EMPEL® technology uses advanced green chemistry devoid of PFAS and a specialized manufacturing process that allows the chemistry to penetrate the yarn and encapsulate it with a water-repellent layer through molecular cross-linking. The molecular cross-linking creates an extremely durable layer that is highly resistant to abrasion and invisible to the eye.
“DynaPel™ represents a new generation of sustainable, high-performance water-repellant zippers,” stated Tsukumo. “It is the future of water protection for zippers.”
DynaPel™ zippers were showcased at the Outdoor Retailer trade show in Salt Lake City and will be featured at the ISPO trade fair in Munich, Germany. Notably, DynaPel™ has been nominated for the Best New Product Award in the ISPO Textrends competition held at ISPO.