Apparel manufacturing involves a wide range of technologies that have evolved over the years to streamline processes, improve efficiency, and enhance product quality. In the apparel industry, manufacturers are always concern about their production and quality of garment. To increase their production and get a high quality garments they adopt different technologies in different section of apparel manufacturing.
List of Technologies Used in Apparel Manufacturing Industry:
Here you will find out some key technologies that are used in the apparel manufacturing process to increase productivity and profit also, along with detailed descriptions of each:
1.Computer-Aided Design (CAD):
CAD is involves the efficient use of computers for drawing and designing parts or products for analysis and testing of design. CAD software is also used in apparel design and fashion design to create digital patterns, sketches, and prototypes. Designers can manipulate and experiment with various designs, colors, and patterns before producing physical samples, reducing time and cost.
2. Computer-Aided Pattern Making (CAM):
CAM systems digitize pattern making by converting paper patterns into digital formats. This technology enables precise pattern adjustments and grading, ensuring consistent sizing across different garments.
3. Automatic Cutting Machines:
Automated cutting machines use computer-controlled blades or lasers to cut fabric accurately and efficiently. They can cut multiple layers of fabric simultaneously, increasing productivity and reducing material waste.
4. High speed sewing machines (HSSM):
Sewing machines are run on high speed with fully or semi automated operation, digital panel and control systems. Advanced sewing machines, including computerized and programmable models, are used for stitching garments. These machines offer various stitching options, speed control, and automatic features, improving the quality and speed of sewing processes.
5. Heat Transfer Printing:
This technology involves transferring designs onto fabrics using heat and pressure. It’s commonly used for printing logos, graphics, and patterns on apparel. Sublimation printing is a variation that results in durable, vibrant, and fade-resistant prints.
6. Embroidery Machines:
Computerized embroidery machines use digital files to create intricate and detailed embroidery designs on garments. They offer precise control over stitch patterns and colors, ensuring consistent quality.
7. Modern Fusing and Pressing Machine (MFPM):
Modern fusing machines are used to fuse the material with controlled temperature and speed adjustment system and the steam pressing machines with air suction systems.
8. Textile Inspection Systems:
Automated inspection systems use cameras and software to detect defects, stains, or inconsistencies in fabric or finished garments. This helps maintain product quality and reduces the likelihood of flawed items reaching customers.
9. Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID):
RFID technology is used for inventory tracking, product management, and supply chain optimization. RFID tags are attached to garments, allowing manufacturers to monitor their movement throughout the production process and distribution chain.
10. Automated Inspection (AIN):
Products presentation and inspection are completed by automatically.
11. Barcoding and Enterprise Resource Planning Systems (ERP):
Barcode systems and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software are crucial for inventory management, order tracking, and production planning. They help streamline operations and improve overall efficiency.
12. 3D Body Scanning:
This technology is used to capture precise measurements and body shapes, enabling the creation of made-to-measure or customized apparel. It’s particularly useful in online retail and made-to-order services.
13. Sustainable Textile Technologies:
Various sustainable technologies have emerged, such as waterless dyeing, recycled fabrics, and eco-friendly finishing processes. These technologies aim to reduce the environmental impact of apparel manufacturing.
14. Wearable Technology Integration:
The incorporation of electronics and sensors into clothing, known as smart textiles or e-textiles, is a growing trend. These technologies enable features like temperature control, fitness tracking, and communication capabilities in garments.
15. Computers Used on Factory Floor (CUFF):
Computers used only for data acquisition or monitoring daily data, but that are also capable of being reprogrammed for other functions.
16. Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR):
VR and AR are used in design and virtual prototyping. Designers can visualize and interact with 3D models of garments, making it easier to test and refine designs before production.
17. Sustainability and Traceability Software:
Software solutions are used to track and manage sustainable sourcing, ethical production, and supply chain transparency. These technologies help brands and manufacturers meet sustainability goals and comply with regulations.
18. Robotics and Automation:
Robotic systems are employed in various tasks, such as folding, sorting, and even sewing. They enhance production efficiency and reduce labor costs.
19. Blockchain Technology:
Blockchain is used to create transparent and tamper-proof supply chains, ensuring authenticity, traceability, and ethical sourcing of materials.
20. Automated Material Handling Devices (AMHD):
This system mainly helps to automatic material handling devices like loading, unloading, or sorting unit loads; parts feeding and finally delivery devices.
21. Numerical Control Machine Tools (NC):
It is A form of programmable automation in which the processing equipment is controlled by way of letters, numbers, or other symbols.
22. Statistical Process Control (SPC):
Some mathematical techniques are used to control manufacturing processes into specified limits to confirm that process.
23. Production Planning/ Inventory Management Software (PPIC):
It is a computerized production planning system. It’s act is material requirements planning , master production scheduling, and capacity planning.
24. Local Area Networks (LAN):
It’s a local area communication system. This system gives the license for various devices connected to the network to communicate with each other over distance of several feet to several miles.
25. Pick/Place Robot (PPR):
A simple robot that mainly use to transfer the items from one place to other place.
26. Other robots (OR):
It is a re-programmable, multi-functional manipulator designed for automation assembly line for garment making, moving materials, parts and tools, or specialized devices.
27. Internet (IT):
Internet is use for web hosting, online communication, email and to search.
28. Communication (CM):
Usage of cell phone, pagers (it is an electronic device that usually worn on one’s person, that receives messages and signals the user by beeping or vibrating), and Fax.
Apparel manufacturing is a dynamic industry that continuously adapts to technological advancements, market demands, and sustainability concerns. Staying up-to-date with these technologies is essential for manufacturers to remain competitive and meet the evolving needs of consumers.
Editor of Fashion2Apparel. She is a fashion designer and ex-lecturer in Fashion Designing. She wants to spread fashion knowledge throughout the world.