26. September 2017 / Worldwide Voting for DNFI Innovation in Natural Fibres Award 2017 Underway

With its first DNFI Natural Fibres Award the Discover Natural Fibres Initiative recognizes outstanding innovation in the development of products and processes using natural fibres and research involving natural fibres.

Now underway through September 30, 2017, all members of DNFI, and anyone, anywhere in the world, including persons who are not members of DNFI, may create a voter ID on the DNFI website and vote for their top choice.

The member committee announced five finalists for the DNFI Innovation in Natural Fibers Award 2017 end of August. These finalists from Austria and Germany represent a diverse set of technologies and approaches, each with good commercial possibilities:

  • Cloppenburg, Frederik, M.Sc. Head of Research Group Nonwoven Technology, Institut für Textiltechnik (ITA) of the RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany and Dr. Sangeetha Ramaswamy: “System4Green – Methodology for development of products with renewable raw materials.”
  • Popzyk, Marie-Isabel, Dipl.-Ing., Scientific Assistant, Institut für Textiltechnik (ITA) der RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany and Klein, Roland, Dr., Group Manager Design of Interfaces, Fraunhofer-Institute for Structural Durability and System Reliability LBF, Darmstadt, Germany: “Reduction of the moisture absorption of natural fibers and production of no-twist yarns for use in structural components.”
  • Thouvay, Stéphane, Managing Director Product Management & Innovation, Südwolle Group, Schwaig, Germany: “Naturetexx® Plasma: making wool machine-washable without chlorine – just plasma and air.”
  • Wonneberger, Maik, Employee research and development, INVENT GmbH, Braunschweig, Germany and Thiele, Elke; Helbig, Reinhard, Falck, Corinna; and Thielemann, Günther; Saxon textile research institute, Chemnitz, Germany: “Biogenic Heavy Tows Based on Hemp Bast Bark.”
  • Wuzella, Günter Dipl.-Ing. Dr., Research team Green Composites, W3C, Kompetenzzentrum Holz GmbH, Linz: “Innovation in Renewable energy – Rotor blades from hemp-based composites.”

As of September 25, people from 136 countries have participated in the voting process! This indicates worldwide interest in the award and appreciation for the excellence of the award submissions.

The Chair of DNFI, Terry Townsend, former Executive Director of the International Cotton Advisory Committee, noted that many submissions were of exceptional quality. He said that choosing the five finalists had been a very difficult process, and he thanked all the scientists and engineers who had made submissions.

The winner will be announced in the first week of October 2017.

More information about the voting process on

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