Approach to performance rating of retroreflective textile material considering production technology and reflector size

The study investigates retroreflective fabrics’ efficiency from the point of view of the interaction of their visibility, thermo-physiological comfort properties, and durability (represented by physical-mechanical performance). The effect of the combination of two production technologies (reflective transfer films and screen printing method) and two reflector covering sizes (25% and 85%) was examined. Technique for order of preference by similarity to ideal solution (TOPSIS) method was used to determine the best solution considering the abovementioned tested categories of properties. Retroreflective performance was in congruence with the used design coverage factor of the tested pattern. It was found that retroreflection of the tested pattern produced using screen-printing technology was significantly lower than retroreflection of an identical pattern made by a transfer film. On the contrary, in terms of thermo-physiological comfort and physical-mechanical performance of the tested samples, screen printing technology shows significantly better results in almost all tested properties, especially in water vapour permeability, moisture management, and physical-mechanical performance. The solution for the abovementioned contradictory results can be achieved by using a combination of the advantages associated with each of these technology methods. Screen printing can be applied to specific regions of clothing that are exposed to extreme loading or sweating, and the transfer of film elements ensures high visibility with respect to the standards and biomotion principles that are deployed as prevalent benchmarks in the industry

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