At its sixth annual meeting scheduled to take place at the Palais des Congress in Lyon on December 3rd this year, The Institut Francais Textile-Habillement will be turning the spotlight on "extreme" textiles, which it describes as the sector's "new stars."

It will be looking to highlight the role of "lighter, more resistant and interactive" fabrics in combating the problems of pollution and developing generally more ecologically viable products of all types.

"Textiles have become one of our most valuable defensive weapons in the battle to preserve our planet as we know it today" the Insitut declares. "Meanwhile in more traditional textile usage - to create clothing - specialised textiles are already at work providing protection to wearers living and working in hostile environments of which the most dramatic setting is space travel."

At the December conference it is hoped that scientists, executives from companies currently involved in specialised textile production, and the users of such textiles will be able to exchange views about the directions the extreme textiles market will take next, as well as plotting the scope of their current use.

By Sonia Roberts.