Category:

Laboratories

LABORATORIES & INNOVATION

13 th July 2020

Traditional soccer ball on soccer field

AITEX is one of eight worldwide FIFA-approved laboratories for the approval of artificial turf football pitches. The FIFA quality concept has become a recognised international standard. Laboratories who are recognised by FIFA must undergo a rigorous selection process in which the technical capacity of the laboratories is evaluated.

The FIFA Quality Concept for Synthetic Surfaces was created with a commitment to standardise the quality and safety of artificial surfaces for football players and to promote the development of artificial turf technology.

The FIFA Quality Programme has several objectives: to improve the game at all levels, and protect the health of players and clubs and associations who need products that meet the highest safety and quality requirements.

FIFA has designed two categories or quality marks for artificial turf depending on the needs of the players and the use for which the surfaces are intended:

o FIFA QUALITY is primarily aimed at grassroots football, mainly in the amateur level. The certification is valid for three years.

o FIFA QUALITY PRO, is primarily intended for professional and high-performance football. The certification is valid for one year.

The process of certification of a sports surface takes place in different phases. Firstly, the artificial turf systems are pre-tested in the laboratory and if the results of the analysis meet all the requirements, FIFA can certify the pitch with either the FIFA QUALITY or FIFA QUALITY PRO labels if it is installed with an artificial turf system previously approved by FIFA. Only FIFA-accredited companies can initiate this process.

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The environmental impact of the textile sector has become one of today’s most worrying issues, as it is the second most polluting industry on the planet. The high consumption of water and chemical products, its carbon footprint, dumping and the emission of microplastics are some of the critical aspects of the production process. Coupled with the enormous quantities of waste and the low recycling rate (only 1% is transformed into new garments) means that the development of sustainable strategies and business models are urgently needed.

In response to the needs and challenges that this change represents for the textile sector, AITEX has created a Technical Unit for Sustainability and Circular Economy that will work transversally along three lines of action: R+D, Laboratories and Training.

In R&D, AITEX has 37 experimental plants to work on the challenges posed by the circular economy at all stages of the textile life cycle, through the development of its own research projects or in collaboration with partners. The line covers everything from eco-design and environmentally friendly production processes, to the prevention of waste and recycling in the final phase of the textile production cycle. The development of new bio-fibres and bio-polymers, chemical and mechanical recycling processes, the revaluation of pre- and post-consumption waste, the use of auxiliary products of natural origin and research into eco-finishing processes are some of the fields in which R&D projects are currently being carried out.
AITEX’s laboratory facilities provide companies with infrastructure and laboratory equipment for the characterisation of products, quality control and certification, in compliance with international sustainability regulations and standards. Voluntary eco-labels or certifications in sustainability and traceability are an important transparency tool that provides consumers with information on the environmental impact of products when making purchasing decisions. AITEX is an accredited entity for the Global Recycle Standard (GRS) and Recycled Claim Standard (RSC) certifications that verify the content of recycled material in products as well as compliance with good environmental practices in processes.
Likewise, the Institute creates social and environmental value by promoting environmental education, innovation, efficiency and the generation of employment and a stronger industrial base. AITEX’s Training Division provides technical training in new sustainable techniques and low environmental impact textile processes through courses in collaboration with other leading institutions such as the UPV.
With the introduction of the Technical Unit, AITEX makes its capabilities and resources available to textile manufacturers to improve their position as environmentally sustainable companies and to generate business opportunities through the change to new circular models.
After an initial analysis of the sector’s needs, one of the actions that will be carried out in the short term is the creation of an Environmental Sustainability Guide for the Textile Sector; in which concepts, applicable regulations, available certifications, success cases and good practices will be clarified.
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AITEX will attend the twenty-second International Safety Fair over the 25th and 28th of February in Madrid. Pay us a visit in Hall 3, Stand E05.

The International Safety Fair Spain, organised by IFEMA, will bring together manufacturers and suppliers of safety equipment in five major areas: security, including electronic security, physical safety and security services; defence, which includes advanced security solutions in defence; cybersecurity, responsible for the protection of business information, systems and data; fire and emergency security, acting actively and passively against fire; and safety in the workplace, covering the protection and welfare of employees.

SICUR

AITEX’s advanced protective equipment laboratory

AITEX has continued to innovate and improve the service we provide by focusing our attention on the evolution of our laboratories towards covering items of Personal Protective Equipment that were previously beyond our remit. The Institute has been working for many years as a Notified Body in the evaluation of conformity of PPEs as gloves, clothing and harnesses and combining this experience with customer demand, we have been working towards providing our laboratories with the necessary equipment to evaluate PPEs for eye and facial, respiratory and head protection, and the evaluation of dielectric gloves for high voltage work. This year, visitors to the AITEX stand will get the opportunity to take a virtual tour of the testing facilities at the Institute.

AITEX recently achieved approval by ENAC as a Certification Body for Personal Protection Equipment, in compliance with ISO/IEC 17065:2012.

AITEX will also present its recent accreditation by the National Accreditation Entity (ENAC) as an Individual Protection Equipment Certification Body according to ISO / IEC 17065: 2012 in the field of regulatory action (Regulation (EU) 2016 / 425 and under the conformity assessment schemes: Module B (EU Type Exam), Module C2 (Conformity to type based on production control plus supervised control of the product at random intervals) and Module D (Conformity with the type based on the quality assurance of the production process).

 

Last year’s fair was visited by 43,732 professionals, an increase of 3.4% over 2016, and 1,344 companies from 81 different countries. Business participation rose to 651 exhibitors, an increase of 13% with a wider range of new safety products in each of the sectors represented. The last fair was one of the most representative and innovative to date, given its level of participation and the range of news, content and activities offered.

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LABORATORIOS & INNOVACIÓN

29 de Octubre de 2019

AITEX has recently been approved by ENAC (The National Accreditation Body) as a Certification Body for Personal Protection Equipment in compliance with ISO/IEC 17065:2012.

AITEX has recently been approved by ENAC (The National Accreditation Body) as a Certification Body for Personal Protection Equipment in compliance with ISO/IEC 17065:2012 within EU Regulation 2016/425, under the following evaluation of conformity schemes: Module B (EU Type Examination), Module C2 (Conformity of type based on production monitoring plus random supervised product monitoring) and Module D (Conformity of Type based on production QA).

The scope of Approval 155 C-PR364 granted to AITEX can be viewed on ENAC’s website (www.enac.es) covering the scope, products and hazards that AITEX can test. AITEX is also registered as Notified Body number 161 on the European Commission’s website (nando).

This new approval enables AITEX to provide certification of category II and III PPEs as both types require the application of Module B and, in the case of Category III, either Module C2 or D.

Depending on the evaluation procedure within (EU) 2016/425 which the client requires AITEX to test for as a Notified Body:

Module B: the EU Examination of Type is the part of the evaluation procedure that a Notified Body uses to approve the technical design of a PPE, verifying and certifying that the design complies with essential health and safety requirements required by the Regulation.

Module C2: the Notified Body will test the product to verify the QA procedures during manufacture and the homogeneity of the PPE and its conformity with the type described on the EU Type Examination Certificate and applicable health and safety requirements.

Module D: the Notified Body will evaluate the internal QA system to verify compliance with the requirements referred to in para. 3.2 Annexe VIII. It shall presume conformity with those requirements in respect of the elements of the quality system that comply with the corresponding specifications of the applicable harmonised standard.

The accreditation process integrated the requirements of ISO / IEC 17065: 2012 to the systems that AITEX previously applied, to certify under the conformity assessment schemes of Module B and C2 Personal Protection Equipment, establishing for these products the application procedures for Module D, which AITEX had previously only used for Marine Equipment. Thus, by integrating systematics with different scopes, AITEX has standardised within a single Accreditation Scope, the certifications for which it is approved, specifically in 155 C-PR364. For further details, visit the official ENAC website.

For more information:

ENAC: www.enac.es

European Commission:  Notified bodies nando

Photo of woman firefighter in helmet and mask standing near fire truck at fire station
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COSMETICS

29th October 2019

More than 2300 professionals from the cosmetic industry gathered at the 4th Cosmetorium fair held on October 23 and 24 at the Fira Montjuïc in Barcelona. This year is the second time AITEX has participated, and the fair covered a much larger exhibition space than previous years. 137 exhibitors, both national and international, who presented their new launches, products and services, supported the event: 13% more than the previous year.

Cosmetorium represents the largest showcase for the sector in our country. Manufacturers’ innovations and launches marked the new trends within the industry, with a clear commitment to conscious, responsible and sustainable cosmetics throughout the cosmetics manufacturing chain.

Within the scientific program organised by Cosmetorium, AITEX gave a conference on electro-spinning technology and its applications in cosmetics, which proved popular and generated considerable interest among leading companies in the sector. Electrospinning allows a new generation of nonwovens to be created, in a network of intertwined nanofibres. In the cosmetic sector, technology is used to manufacture masks or patches with active compounds, which dissolve and become absorbed completely during use, without creating waste.

AITEX also participated in the Tech Focus program on innovation in efficiency and effectiveness tests for hair care products, which was attended by leading companies in the sector who wanted to learn first-hand the range of innovative trials AITEX can provide.

cosmetorium
cosmetorium
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INNOVATION

29th October 2019

Protective equipment on a mannequin. Specialist clothes. Protective helmet. Antinoise headphones. Protective glasses. Personal protective equipment. Safety at work.

AITEX has a stand at the leading health and safety in the workplace fair in Düsseldorf from the 5th to the 8th November 2019

AITEX will be in Hall 4 Stand 4F01, introducing all the certification and testing services it offers in personal protective equipment. The A + A Fair actively contributes to progress and innovation for the benefit of people and businesses, and is the leading fair in occupational safety and health.

AITEX’s advanced protection equipment laboratory

At  the Textile Technological Institute (AITEX), we strive to continue innovating and improving the services we provide, focusing our attention on the evolution of our laboratories towards aspects of Personal Protective Equipment that were previously beyond our remit. The Institute’s laboratories have been working for many years as a Notified Body in the evaluation of the conformity of PPE in the form of gloves, clothing and harnesses. Taking this invaluable experience as a base, and seeking to meet customer demand, we have been working to provide our laboratories with the necessary equipment to evaluate PPE for Eye and Facial Protection, Respiratory, Head Protection and Evaluation of Dielectric Gloves for high voltage work.


Global and comprehensive eye and face protection service

The data collected by the Ministry of Labour, Migration and Social Security from January to May of 2019 reveal that during this period, the number of occupational accidents involving eye and face injuries was 7,818 and 1,907 respectively.
Between the two, these accidents represent 72.9% of all accidents related to injuries to the head and 4.4% of the total workplace accidents.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 26% of occupational injuries or illnesses that affected the head during 2017 involved the eyes.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), of the United States Department of Labor, considers it essential to reduce the possible risks by correct workplace design, as well as knowledge of the different personal protective equipment (PPE) available and the correct use of each of them according to the activity undertaken.
The prevalence of eye and facial accidents previously revealed shows how important protection is in the workplace, as well as the need to assess the risks of each job and promote employee training so they can choose the appropriate PPE according to the risk to which they are exposed.
AITEX is fully equipped and possesses the necessary infrastructure to perform tests on face and eye protection.
Article published in the AITEX review nº63: reed more
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LABORATORIES & INNOVATION

12th September 2019

AITEX will be present at Cosmetorium in Hall -1 stand 235 on the 23rd and 24th October at the Palau de Congresos in Barcelona.

Cosmetorium is an event created by the Spanish Society of Cosmetic Chemists (SEQC) to create an all-round forum on the formulation, manufacture and distribution of cosmetics in response to the needs of the sector, and to highlight Spain’s importance as a centre of excellence in the cosmetics industry.

AITEX has a long tradition in applied chemistry in the textile industry and can now apply this expertise and potential to the world of cosmetics. The Institute is fully equipped with the latest and most sophisticated laboratory facilities and pilot plant and the Cosmetic’s Technical Unit is able to provide highly innovative R+D services to the cosmetics industry.

More information: 

AITEX: www.aitex.es/cosmetica

Cosmetorium: www.cosmetorium.es/

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LABORATORIES & INNOVATION

16th September 2019

A professional firefighter dressed in uniform and an oxygen mask standing in fire sparks and smoke over a dark background.

AITEX will be at the leading health and safety at work fair in Düsseldorf from the 5th to the 8th November 2019.

You will find AITEX in Hall 4 Stand 4F01, where we will be promoting our testing and certification services for PPEs. The A+A Fair makes a huge contribution to progress and innovation to the benefit of individuals and companies and is the world’s foremost health-and-safety-at-work fair.

AITEX’s Advanced Protection Equipment Laboratory

It is our stated objective at AITEX to keep on innovating and improving our services by focusing our attention on evolving our laboratory facilities to cover items of Personal Protection Equipment that we cannot certify at present. We have worked steadily for years as a Notified Body on the evaluation and conformity of PPEs such as gloves, articles of clothing and harnesses. This experience has become a cornerstone for our work responding to the needs of our clients and is the basis for the continuous improvements and refitting of our laboratory facilities to cover a wider range of PPEs including Eye and Facial protection, Breathing, Protective Head Gear and Dielectric Gloves for high voltage work.

EU Certification of Type

Before a PPE can be sold in Europe, it must comply with the health and safety requirements set out in Law 2016/425, via the evaluation of conformity procedure: EU Type Examination.
Using the procedure, the Notified Body will not only evaluate a prototype PPE through harmonised testing but will also evaluate its technical documentation, the information booklet which accompanies it and any labels and markings which are attached. A product that successfully passes the EU Type Examination will be issued with an evaluation report and an EU Certification of Type by the Notified Body.
Either of the following two options will accompany the EU Certification of Type:

  • Type Conformity based on an internal production control and random supervised testing (module C2).
  • Type Conformity based on production QA (module D)
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COSMETICS

 9th October 2019

sun protection -mother applying sunblock cream on daughter shoulder at beach

The need to protect ourselves from the sun and the irreparable damage it causes to our skin is a common topic in the media and skin care articles. According to researchers, Spain is one of the European countries that will suffer the most from the consequences of climate change in the coming years.

Studies indicate that future summers will be hotter and longer, and that winters will be warmer . Good news for the development and sales of sunscreen products that are about to go on the market. Historically, sales of these products are associated with the summer months, but these predictions are expected to alter consumer trends, making sales less seasonal.

The social implications of sunlight

Sunlight has always played a fundamental role in human evolution as the synthesis of vitamin D, essential to bone development, needs sunlight. Although the human body has melanin that acts as a physical and chemical barrier to the harmful effects of UV rays, it does not provide enough protection. Every day more is known about the harmful effects (both visible and invisible), caused by sunlight on the skin yet many people are still ignorant of the dangers of daily exposure to radiation without protection.

Throughout history, having paler skin was a symbol of distinction, separating the upper class from working class, who were tanned from working outdoors under the sun without any protection.

In the early twentieth century, scientific advances revealed the therapeutic benefits of sunlight and many experts began to recommend sunbathing for numerous diseases. Almost overnight, European high society decided that having pale skin was no longer attractive, creating an industry of fashionable cosmetics.

New services

AITEX has incorporated and developed cutting-edge equipment to measure the sun protection factor of solar products both “in vivo” and “in vitro”.

The equipment allows us to carry out multiple high performance SPF (Sun Protection Factor) tests and dermatological studies quickly. The simulators meet the latest spectral irradiation standards: ISO – International Organization for Standardization, FDA – Food and Drug Administration, JCIA – Japan Cosmetic Industry Association and COLIPA – The European Cosmetic and Perfumery Association.

In addition, the systems are fully integrated for a fast, efficient and accurate analysis of the UV transmittance of sunscreens, liquids, lotions, creams, textiles, spray, gels, powders, emulsions, etc.


Article published in the AITEX review nº62:
 keep reading

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LABORATORIES & INNOVATION

16th of September 2019

step-oekotext

With over 25 years’ experience, OEKO-TEX® leads the world in certifying manufacturers and products and educating consumers to protect our planet through responsible decisions. OEKO-TEX® provides standardised solutions that optimise manufacturing processes and offer high quality and more sustainable products. All products in the OEKO-TEX® portfolio reinforce customer systems, processes and products and, ultimately, help create more sustainable businesses. To date, 10,000 manufacturers, brands and retailers in almost 100 countries are working with OEKOTEX® to ensure that their products have been screened for potentially harmful substances, and millions of consumers worldwide look for OEKOTEX® labels before making their purchasing decisions.

LEATHER STANDARD by OEKO-TEX®

In 2017, OEKO-TEX® launched the LEATHER STANDARD by OEKO-TEX®. The Standard is a worldwide testing and certification system for leather and leather goods at all production levels, and includes crust, finished leather, leather clothes, leather gloves, belts, bags and accessories.
The certification is part of the OEKO-TEX® Association’s products and services portfolio. The most frequent and worrying substances found in leather goods are arylamines, chromium (VI), formaldehyde, pentachlorophenol and cadmium, all of which can be detected and controlled by LEATHER STANDARD by OEKO-TEX®.

Like STANDARD 100 by OEKOTEX®, the certification is valid for a year, can be extended if the applicant so requests and distinguishes between four kinds of products. The longer a product is in contact with the skin and the more sensitive the skin, the stricter the limits that must be met.
• Product class I: Products for babies and children up to 3 years of age (leather garments, leather gloves, etc.)
• Product class II: Products in direct contact with the skin (leather trousers and jackets, leather underwear, etc.)
• Product class III: Products without direct skin contact (lined leather jackets / coats, leather bags, leather belts, etc.)
• Product class IV: Decoration and furniture materials (leather upholstery covers, etc.)

STeP by OEKO-TEX® for leather manufacturers

Today’s consumers demand not only high quality leather and leather textile products, but increasingly require that these products are safe for health, respect the environment and are manufactured using socially responsible production methods. Therefore, OEKO-TEX® has extended the STeP by OEKO-TEX® certificate for leather producers, which certifies that the production of leather is completely sustainable.
The objective of the certification system is that the production processes remain environmentally friendly and promote the improvement of the health and safety of consumers, and the socially responsible working conditions of companies throughout the supply chain. The STeP by OEKO-TEX® certification criteria are regularly updated to certified companies, thus there is a continuous improvement in environmental aspects and social responsibility, which strengthens the economic situation and competitiveness of certified companies.
Requirements and evaluation criteria for the Certificate
STeP by OEKO-TEX® certification requires conformity with the following modules:
STeP by OEKO-TEX® evaluates the conformity of the entire production chain.

TEXTILE MANUFACTURE

• Dry and wet spinning, twisting and processes related to fabrics

• Wovens, non-wovens, non-woven production processes and related processes
• Pre-treatments, dyeing, printing, finishing and processing
• Making up textile articles
• Accessory manufacture (zips, buttons, labels)
• Foam and mattress manufacture
• Textile logistics
• Others (e.g. fibre production)

LEATHER AND HIDE PRODUCTION

• Beamhouse • Leather finishing • Retannage, tanning and greasing • Leather and hide logistics

Steps to obtaining certification
In order to obtain the STeP by OEKO-TEX® the following stages must be passed:

1. REQUEST CERTIFICATION. Complete the application form on the OEKO-TEX® website.
2. ONLINE EVALUATION TOOL. Fill in the online form
3. ANALYSIS AND EVALUATION. Evaluation by the OEKO-TEX® STeP auditing team
4. COMPANY AUDIT. The OEKO-TEX® STeP auditor will verify the data submitted on the evaluation tool.
5. EVALUATION. Corrective actions and OEKO-TEX® STeP auditor support
6. CERTIFICATION AND FINAL REPORT. OEKO-TEX® prepares a detailed final report

STeP by OEKO-TEX® allows a manufacturer to look at their manufacturing conditions in depth along the entire value chain from the viewpoint of sustainability.

The advantages of STeP by OEKO-TEX®

Brands and retailers.
STeP allows companies to search for suppliers worldwide that meet responsibility, environmental and social protection requirements. This means that the entire supply chain has a clear and deep-seated commitment to the STeP values offering clear advantages to the end user.

Textile, leather and hide manufacturers.
The advantages it offers to manufacturers is that it significantly increases the efficiency of their production processes. The certification system helps them position themselves in terms of sustainability and social responsibility while in addition, identifying areas where improvements can be made.
STeP by OEKO-TEX® for leather producers is an independent certification that certifies that the production conditions are sustainable, and contributes to improving corporate image, which in turn allows the company to develop new markets and suppliers.
If you are interested in applying for any type of OEKO-TEX® certificate, contact AITEX, an OEKO-TEX® member Institute.

For more information: www.aitex.es/certificaciones

Si está interesado en solicitar cualquier tipo de certificado OEKO-TEX®, puede contactar con AITEX, Instituto miembro de OEKO-TEX®.
Más información en: www.aitex.es/certificaciones

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