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Helixgarne - Acoustomechanical cleaning of textile floor coverings based on metallic helix yarns

Textile floor coverings are currently a major focus of the sustainability debate. Their global warming potential is determined by production and recycling. The contribution of maintenance, on the other hand, is low. Extending the useful life gives a significant contribution to reducing the global warming potential of textile floor coverings.

Textile floor coverings usually are not replaced due to mechanical wear, but because of unsightly soiling. Maintenance cleaning with a vacuum cleaner or damp basic cleaning has limitations in terms of effectiveness or drying time.

The aim of the project was the effective cleaning and accelerated drying of textile floor coverings in order to significantly extend their useful life. To this end, new types of textile floor coverings made of core-sheath yarns were developed. To clean them, the wfk developed a cleaning and drying process based on shock wave technology.


TFI has developed core-sheath yarns (helix yarns), coatings and tufting constructions with a high acoustic impedance that enable effective soiling release. The new yarns consist of a metal core that is wrapped by voluminous, bulky carpet yarns to achieve the typical characteristics. Helix yarns were developed in a two-stage, counter-rotating reversing direction as well as a pile fixation and back coating based on the thermobonding principle.

A suitable process control was developed for the acoustomechanical cleaning of textile floor coverings and, based on this, an acoustomechanical process for cleaning textile floor coverings. The findings were scaled up to a functional model with three shock wave applicators and improvement approaches were formulated with regard to process speed and exposure time.


The stress tests on the new textile floor coverings showed results that were suitable for commercial application with some limitations. The health and safety requirements were fulfilled.

With regard to acoustomechanical cleaning, optimum conditions for shock wave and process parameters for dirt removal were developed. The positive effect of the helix yarn structure with metal yarn on the cleaning effect of shock wave treatment compared to conventional pile fabric was proven. Improvement approaches were formulated with regard to process speed and exposure time. The potential for a doubling of surface performance, a 90 % reduction in the use of cleaning agents and a 50 % reduction in water consumption was identified. Corresponding process recommendations were given. The cost calculation of the processes does not hinder the general usability of the results.

Funding program and project number

IGF 21957 N / 1


01.11.2021 – 31.10.2023



Dr. Ansgar Paschen

Phone: +49 241 9679-156



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