CSIR Fibre and Textiles unit

CSIR Provides Specialised Skills Training

The CSIR Fibre and Textiles unit in Port Elizabeth recently completed a week-long training course aimed at skills upgrading in the nonwoven textiles industry.  Altogether twenty six participants received certificates by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) director of skills for the economy unit, Dr Julius Nyalunga.  “This was the first industry focused, nonwoven training programme designed to provide participants with an overview of the nonwoven manufacturing process and emerging market trends,” says the CSIR’s Dr Rajesh Anandjiwala.

CSIR Provides Specialised Skills Training

He explains that nonwovens are one of the fastest growing segments in the high performance applications of fibre based materials (or flexible materials) with an annual growth rate of 10% per year in many countries. “While the nonwoven sector is perceived as an area with high growth potential in South Africa, the realisation of that growth has been held back by the shortage of skills. In South Africa, it is widely perceived that the nonwoven sector has the potential to grow.”

The DTI has helped in equipping the CSIR with state-of-the-art nonwoven pilot-scale manufacturing facilities and a characterisation laboratory for the development of newer nonwoven products for various applications.  The nonwoven plant is a unique combination of several technologies for the production of a wide diversity of nonwoven fabrics.

In the absence of a SETA accredited training intervention in nonwovens, the CSIR used the expertise and experience of its own staff to prepare a comprehensive training programme, both theoretical and experimental, with demonstrations of different manufacturing techniques.

Anandjiwala concludes: “With the increase in local as well as global demand for these products, it has become imperative for local industry to be aware of the trends in the present market scenario. This training programme will improve understanding and enhance skills in the nonwoven manufacturing processes.”

For more information and technical enquiries, contact Dr Rajesh Anandjiwala – email:RAnandi@csir.co.za, tel: +27 41 508 3273, or visit online: www.csir.co.za.