DORNBIRN, Austria — September 20, 2023 — With more than 550 participants from more than 30 countries, the Dornbirn GFC 2023 was a great success. 125 presentations on the main topics of fiber innovation, recycling, circular economy, sustainability, nonwovens, technical textiles, sports and apparel were presented to the professional audience.
Organizational direction and development
The successful GFC Organisation is very lean and operational lead by Friedrich Weninger as Managing Director and operational ad well as executional driven by Sonja Spöcker.
As Friedrich Weninger gave already in the past signals to step back from his role and responsibilities the upcoming two to three years, there was the proposal made and approved by all the necessary decision- makers of the Austrian fiber institute to Start a recruitment process and look for a successor to orchestrate a soft hand-over process the upcoming years. During the search and selection process Andreas Dorner was appointed in summer 2023 by all necessary stakeholders of the Austrian fiber institute to start first as a Co- Managing Director and during the hand over process taking over lead the next two to three years
Dornbirn GFC takes up the challenges of the textile industry
“The challenges currently facing the fiber industry require fundamental changes in the value chains. We see new strategic partnerships being formed to take advantage of new opportunities around innovation, circular economy and new business models. The 62nd edition of the Dornbirn GFC shows once again that it is the perfect place for such new partnerships”, said Robert van de Kerkhof, chief sustainability officer of Lenzing AG and president of the Dornbirn GFC. Fritz Weninger, managing director of the Dornbirn GFC added: “That is why we are proud that leading representatives from politics, the energy sector, but also from many companies and start-ups from the entire fiber value chain will come together for three days to exchange ideas on how to accelerate our progress in greening our industry.”
To discuss the challenges of the textile industry in a controversial way, to be inspired by interesting expert presentations from international speakers, and to arrive at sustainable and scientifically based solutions together in the end – this is what the Dornbirn GFC has established itself as a networking platform for over decades.
“For us, it is the conference of the year, where hundreds of ideas for shaping a green future for our industry can become reality.” With this statement Andre Wissenberg, Oerlikon, confirmed the importance and task of the Dornbirn GFC in the textile network.
The opening morning plenary presentation by Dirk Vantyghem, Euratex, Brussels, entitled “The EU Sustainable Textiles Strategy – its impact on the global textile ecosystem” concerns another challenge for national and international producers and suppliers. The European institutions are making rapid progress in implementing the EU textile strategy in legislation. European textile companies are committed to investing in sustainability, developing new circular business models and producing high quality textile products as required by the new legislation. However, for this to happen, companies need a clear and coherent regulatory framework and a level playing field for all companies.
3rd Dornbirn GFC Innovation Days
“The Dornbirn GFC is a great opportunity for innovators to meet the decision makers in the fiber and textile industry. The congress with its focus on innovation and research offers an inspiring environment for high-quality contacts.” The statement from Bjol Frenkenberger, MIR could not be more apt. The young company was one of the participants of the 3rd Dornbirn GFC Innovation Days.
A total of 25 international innovators presented their company and innovations in a lecture in the 4th lecture hall of the Dornbirn GFC. The meeting point of the participants with the professional audience was the Foyer of the Dornbirn Kulturhaus. Forward-looking discussions took place at the respective “touchpoint” of the innovators and new contacts could be generated.
The Innovation Days will take place again at the 63rd Dornbirn GFC 2024. Registration for participation will be possible within the framework of a “Call for Papers” until the end of the year.
Dornbirn GFC Online on demand 2023
Technically it is again possible to offer an online on demand version of the Dornbirn GFC 2023. During the Dornbirn GFC, the presentations will be recorded and will be available online afterwards. The experiences of the last years have shown that this possibility is gladly accepted by the audience. However, the difference to visiting the Dornbirn GFC on site is obvious here. The online platform serves information only.
Personal contacts and the chance to expand one’s network cannot be covered by this format. The visitors of the Dornbirn GFC, who were present on site in Dornbirn, enjoy the access to the online version and can watch the presentations afterwards or catch up on missed opportunities during the Dornbirn GFC.
Dornbirn GFC Online-On-Demand from September 18 – September 30, 2023:
- Dornbirn GFC 2023 Opening Ceremony
- Awarding of the Paul Schlack Prize
- Plenary lectures
- Presentation of the 3rd Dornbirn Innovation Days participants
- Selected lectures from industry, universities and research institutes
- Discussion rounds with the speakers
- Videos of the lectures
- Download of lectures
For visitors of the Dornbirn GFC online on demand the ticket is bookable on: www.dornbirn-gfc.co
Paul Schlack Prize 2023 Award Ceremony
The Paul Schlack/Wilhelm Albrecht Prize 2023 was awarded to the following innovative dissertations:
Henriette Grellmann, convinced the jury with the title: “Technological development of textile-based actuator and sensor structures for complex deformable adaptive fiber-elastomer composites” resp. The dissertation deals with the development of textile-based actuator and sensor systems for adaptive fiber-elastomer composites.
The 2nd honorary prize was awarded to Tim Höhnemann, DITF (German Institutes for Textile and Fiber Research), Denkendorf. The dissertation entitled: ” Generation of monofilaments with defined cross- sectional shape from polymer melt – Correlation of die layout, polymer morphology and process parameters with the bending behavior” was selected by the expert jury.
The award ceremony was organized and conducted by Frédéric van Houte, CIRFS.
Young Scientist Award powered by Lenzing AG
A jury of experts from the fiber industry and Lenzing AG nominated the 2 winners of the Lenzing AG Young Scientist Award from numerous applications. On the opening day, the prize money of € 5,000 per winner was awarded at the gala evening at Messe Dornbirn.
“Comparing Modal with Recycled Modal”, is the title of the dissertation by Nina Sirén, student at Aalto University. The study compares pre-consumer modal with modal recycled using the Ioncell® process. It examines production methods and estimated resource consumption as well as mechanical properties, namely orientation, tensile strength, elongation and abrasion. Nina Sirén is looking for an internship as part of her studies.
Clara Davis impressed with the paper titled “Advanced Overcoming Bacterial Nanocellulose for New Applications. This study explores the potential of using bacterial nanocellulose (BNC) as a tree-free feedstock for regenerated cellulose fibers. By optimizing production conditions, purification methods, and dissolution/regeneration processes, the study addresses the challenges and highlights the unique properties of BNC with the goal of promoting its use as sustainable bio-based fibers in the textile industry.
Outlook into the future
The Managing Director of the Austrian Fibers Institute gives an insight into the future of the Dornbirn GFC, “The early focus on sustainability, circular economy and recycling made the Dornbirn GFC a very relevant idea and network generator for the fiber and textile industry. The holistic approach by integrating “startups” or even “cross-industry” is now bearing fruit.
Through cooperations and alliances the Dornbirn GFC is gaining more and more traction on a global level. One example is the Dornbirn GFC ASIA. Others will follow, and we see a bright future ahead. As a CEO of a major fiber manufacturer once said, “Come to Dornbirn, this is the best place to learn.”
Information on the 63rd Dornbirn GFC 2024
Call for Papers 2024:
Directly after the Dornbirn GFC, preparations for the 63rd Dornbirn GFC 2024 and the 4th Innovation Days will start. The core topic will continue to be the important area of fiber innovation. According to experience, the interest in the topics of circular economy, recycling and sustainability is unbroken in the submissions. Nonwovens and technical textiles will again play a role at the Dornbirn GFC 2024. The package of topics will be presented in the “Call for Papers” by the end of October. Presentations can then be submitted, as usual, until the end of the year.
Date of the 63rd Dornbirn GFC 2024:
The congress will take place in Dornbirn at the Kulturhaus from September 11 to 13, 2024. 2023 we especially thank the loyal sponsors for their cooperation and support. A special thank you goes to the city of Dornbirn and the state of Vorarlberg for the good cooperation.
Posted: September 20, 2023
Source: Dornbirn Global Fiber Congress (GFC)