LIFE TEXTILEATHER - Functional textiles and leathers by innovative MLSE process

LIFE13 ENV/ES/001138

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Contact details:

Project Manager: Felipe CARRASCO
Fax: 34962913150
Email: felipe@ateval.com

Project description:


The textile and leather sectors are water-intensive. According to the Best Available Techniques reference document (BREF) for the textile industry, in mills finishing cotton woven fabrics, waste water flows can range from 50 to 200 litres/kg, depending on the efficiency of the equipment at the textile facility. The main environmental concern is the amount of water discharged and the chemical load it carries. Other important issues are energy consumption, emissions to air, and solid waste and odours, which can be a significant nuisance.

In the framework of the IPPC Directive (2008/1/EC), the BREF documents for the textile and tanning sectors strongly recommend reductions in water consumption and of waste water discharges and the identification of alternatives to harmful chemicals, especially halogenated organic compounds used in fire-retardant and water-proofing treatments.

Moreover, finishing treatments to provide textiles and leathers with special characteristics such as water-proofing, or antibacterial or fire-retardant properties, are, in general, wet batch processes that involve high consumption of energy and large volumes of water. Furthermore, these treatments usually involve the use of hazardous halogenated organic compounds, biocides and organo-phosphorous compounds.


The TEXTILEATHER project will adapt and implement Multiple Laser Surface Enhancement (MLSE) technology for the treatment of textiles and leathers. This technology was originally developed for the metallurgic and electronic sectors. It consists of a dry, continuous process that can reduce significantly the environmental impact of textile and leather finishing operations, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and waste, and use of chemicals, water and energy.

The project will demonstrate, on a semi-industrial scale, the technical, environmental and financial feasibility of the MSLE technology for the treatment of textiles and leather.

The project will apply MLSE to different textiles produced by Spanish and Italian textile and leather manufacturers, in order to determine the materials and conditions for and in which the technology works best. The results of the tests will be used to adapt MLSE equipment currently available in the UK for reel-to-reel material processing.

Expected results: The expected results of the project are:

  • A reduction of 2% in total water consumption in the textile and leather facilities and of about 75% in the finishing process;
  • A reduction of 10-15% in total power consumption and of more than 90% in the finishing process;
  • A reduction of about 10% in consumption of chemicals in the total production process and of more than 90% in the finishing process;
  • As a consequence, a reduction in the environmental costs of the textile and tanning industries is foreseen; and
  • Valuable textiles and leathers will be obtained, which will provide the sector in Europe with new niche opportunities.



Environmental issues addressed:


Energy - Efficiency
Energy - Savings
Environmental management - Cleaner technologies
Industry-Production - Leather and Footwear
Industry-Production - Textiles - Clothing
Risk management - Pollutants reduction
Water - Water saving


clean technology‚  water saving‚  energy saving‚  textile industry‚  leather industry‚  hazardous substance‚  clothing industry

Natura 2000 sites

Not applicable



Type of organisation Professional organisation
Description The Asociación de Empresarios Textiles de la Comunidad Valenciana (ATEVAL) represents Valencian textile companies. The more than 500 associated companies cover a workforce of more than 15 000. ATEVAL has several departments dealing with innovation, industry and environment, external promotion, training, labour and tax law.
Partners NEWPORT(NEWPORT srl), Italy INESCOP(Asociación de Investigación para la Industria del Calzado y Conexas (INESCOP)), Spain TEXATHENEA(TEX ATHENEA, S.L.), Spain CCI(Clúster Calzado Innovación), Spain


Project reference LIFE13 ENV/ES/001138
Duration 02-JUN-2014 to 31-MAY -2017
Total budget 942,842.00 €
EU contribution 471,419.00 €
Project location Galicia(España) Asturias(España) Cantabria(España) País Vasco(España) Navarra(España) Rioja(España) Aragón(España) Madrid(España) Castilla-León(España) Castilla-La Mancha(España) Extremadura(España) Cataluña(España) Comunidad Valenciana(España) Baleares(España) Andalucía(España) Murcia(España) Ceuta y Melilla(España) Canarias(España)


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Project description   Environmental issues   Beneficiaries   Administrative data   Read more   Print   PDF version