Denver International Airport's fabric roof requires an extreme level of weather resistance.
Q-Lab is the world leader in providing lightstability, weathering test equipment, and test services to the textile and fabric industry for apparel, fashion, commercial, and industrial applications. Any items that see sunlight, moisture, and heat are subject to the damaging forces of nature.
Will your apparel and fashion fabrics retain their color? Will your industrial and commercial fabrics and textiles last outdoors? For how long? Does your new raw material supplier have the same quality as your previous one? Has something changed in your process that might affect its long term durability? Don't guess when you can test.
Some textile applications are extremely demanding. An example is Denver International Airport's textile roofing structure. Not just for aesthetics, the fabric used must stand up to years of exposure to the environment.
Q-Lab serves hundreds of customers who manufacture or buy textiles for a variety of applications, including:
- Apparel fabrics
- Carpet and floor coverings
- Military and industrial tents and covers
- Pool covers
- Window treatments
- Automotive interiors
- Woven polypropylene bags (FIBC)
- Outdoor furniture
Common lightfastness tests for apparel and design fabrics are run in the Q-SUN xenon test chamber, recognized by all major international standards organizations, including ISO and AATCC. For textiles and fabrics designed for long duration, outdoor use, both the Q-SUN xenon test chamber and QUV accelerated weathering tester are good choices for simulating outdoor conditions in the laboratory.
Q-Lab's accelerated weathering testers simulate the primary light and weathering conditions that degrade all types of fabrics and textiles, allowing our customers to accurately reproduce multiple potential failure modes, including:
- Fading and color change
- Loss of tensile strength
- Yellowing of polymers
- Decrease in flame resistance
- Loss of IR absorbing or reflecting properties
While accelerated lightstability weathering chambers are a key weapon in the fight against the forces of sunlight, heat, and moisture, nothing beats the real thing: outdoor testing in one of Q-Lab benchmark outdoor testing facilities. Q-Lab's South Florida and Arizona desert sites provide the ultimate test of your product's outdoor durability using natural conditions. If you want to combine the benefits of outdoor and accelerated testing, the Q-TRAC natural sunlight concentrator provides five times the annual solar energy of an exposure in South Florida.
The cost of product failure can be very high, depending on your vantage point.
Relative humidity control in a xenon arc test chamber can play a significant role in the lightfastness of textiles.
Fabrics should be tested at all stages in the manufacturing process - from the thread to the finished garment.
UV light not only can degrade fabrics, it can also penetrate them. New technologies are being developed that block UV for skin protection.
Selecting the right weathering test for the right application is crucial.
As global sourcing increases, it is critical to verify your suppliers' quality claims.