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Polartec Introduces Polartec® Alpha® Insulation

Lawrence, Mass.-based Polartec LLC — manufacturer of Polartec® performance fabrics for consumer and military apparel — has introduced a man-made fiber insulation for puffy-style apparel that provides improved breathability and moisture-vapor transport.

According to the company, Polartec Alpha® is a highly stable layer that enables the use of more open and breathable fabrics, as opposed to down and existing man-made insulation batting, on the outer and inner layers of puffy-style apparel that require high-density woven layers, which form a vapor barrier but can trap moisture inside a garment. Polartec Alpha continues to insulate when wet, and dries faster than traditional puffy-style fabrics. In addition, the insulation is inherently wind-resistant; provides warmth; and is lightweight, durable and highly compressible, Polartec reports.

Polartec developed the insulation for the U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF) and reports it received the highest ratings of any product tested by SOF's evaluation team. Polartec Alpha jackets will be supplied to every Special Forces Operator, and the insulation will be offered to retail consumers by September 2013.

"Polartec Alpha is a natural compliment to our existing layering system fabrics," said Allon Cohne, director of marketing, Polartec. "It will function as outerwear or as an ideal mid layer under fabrics like Polartec Power Shield® Pro or Polartec NeoShell®. It packs small and can quickly recover from something as catastrophic as getting completely soaked while in the field."

November 13, 2012