NTX says the breakthrough is the result of innovations in chemistry and machinery to deliver precise and accurate colourisation of nearly any fabric material without heat, and up to 90% reduction in water use and 40% reduction in dye use. The company adds that it offers all of these benefits while also retaining uncompromising colour fastness, hand feel, and functional performance.

The textile innovations and solutions company, based in Shanghai and Singapore, says this announcement marks a step forward for the fashion industry that has grown to consume nearly 80 billion cubic meters of water per year.

NTX describes the process as completely waterless and the colourisation which is transferred from a paper transfer onto a cellulose-based substrate takes place without the use of any heat, creating exact pattern to the substrate with rich, vibrant colours and second to none colour penetration and colour fastness.

The company says any natural, man-made, or synthetic fibres (apart from poly propylene) can use this process, including high power stretch material.

Kalvin Chong, chairman and co-founder of NTX said in a statement:

“For decades now, our industry has been chasing the elusive goal to reduce the startling amount of water and energy required in the dyeing process of textiles. We’re proud to say that with the launch of NTX Cooltrans, we’ve finally turned the corner.

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The savings associated with lower energy requirements and water usage allow us to bring this game-changing innovation to ecology conscious consumers around the globe without impacting the manufacturing-costs of the final products.”

The colouration process is said to no longer resemble the millennia-old hot temperature dye baths that require mixing of cloth to achieve the desired output. Plants utilising Cooltrans technology are quieter, require less energy, and eliminate the need for dangerous chemicals, NTX says.

The company explains existing NTX Cooltrans production capacity in China and Cambodia will be expanded with the addition of a plant in Indonesia and several Vietnam facilities in 2022.

Cooltrans was one of 13 new innovators selected to join the Fashion for Good Accelerator Programme in 2020