Development of Stitchless Seaming Equipment

Period of Performance: 12/10/2003 - 06/09/2004

$116K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

TEN BAR Ranch Mfg. LLC
11893 Hillcrest Rd.
Golden, CO 80403
Principal Investigator

Abstract

A technology has been developed whereby a polymer (plastic) is delivered through a nozzle onto an area to be seamed causing the polymer to bond to the substrates to which it has been applied. This is accomplished by coaxially delivering laser energy in the plastic as it is being applied. The laser energy coaxially delivered in this way is referred to as Laser Enhanced Bonding (LEB). This process is patented (Patent #5348604). The name of the technology is copyrighted and is referred to in the textile industry as LightSeam. The resulting seam is impermeable, flexible, environmentally safe, long lasting, and aesthetically pleasing. Butt seams generated utilizing LEB demonstrate impermeability approaching or exceeding parent material strengths. This impermeability extends from helium and other gasses to blood pathogens, chemicals, water, and any other characteristics the parent material has been engineered to achieve. The technology allows for the use of virtually any polymer, to be used in conjunction with virtually any complex substrate construct. LEB allows common off-the-shelf polymers to be used in applications previously reserved exclusively for solvent based technologies (neoprenes, rubbers, leather, etc.). This is an incredibly significant environment opportunity. No comparable seaming technologies exist today!