A unique centre for research and textile prototyping, the European Centre for Innovative Textiles (CETI) is aimed at businesses which both use and produce fibres, textile materials, innovative non-woven fabrics and composites.
Operating on a surface of 15000m2 and with all the cutting edge equipment of the industry, it is a privileged place of encounter and resources for textile professionals who wish to develop innovative solutions. Facing the future, CETI, a genuine breeding ground for new ideas, aims to reinvigorate the European textile sector by bringing creative and economically viable solutions to the table. Its mission statement: to put textiles at the heart of innovation by connecting the main players of the industry, such as the universities and laboratories, with the industrial companies. Made up of two buildings it is situated in the Union area in the north of France, in the vicinity of Roubaix, Wattrelos and Tourcoing. The first of these buildings brings together the administrative services and meeting rooms whilst the second holds the laboratories, workshops, show rooms and warehouses.
CETI is divided into three areas. Firstly the academic research and development department which collaborates with the Gemtex laboratory of ENSAIT (Ecole Supérieure des Arts et Industries Textiles) and six other regional laboratories united by GIS MTA (Advanced Textile Materials Scientific Interest Group). Secondly there is the transfer department made up of the IFTH (Institut Français du Textile et de l’Habillement) and the groups of engineers and technicians in CETI. Finally the last department develops links between different structures and businesses. It is organised by UP-tex, the CLUBTEX companies, the fashion textiles and materials department T2Mt, Innotex and the professional unions. For its opening in October 2012, CETI presented a series of conferences around the problems linked to innovative textiles and new fibres, as well as publishing the results of a prospective study on “Innovative Textile Materials 2030”. This study, put together by professionals in various areas of the textile sector, imagined new applications for textiles and fibres in the future by predicting different scenarios.
With projects like these, CETI brings together industrial knowledge, science and innovative technologies, acting as a genuine accelerator in the creative process. With the aim of collecting all the different textile technologies and prototyping, it allows for the quick validation of the viability of new innovative products. It is the definition of Fast Tech: to bring together tools and new ideas in the same place in order to accelerate the development and finalise innovation.
In creating new possibilities for inventing the textiles of tomorrow, and in linking the textile industries, CETI, which is aided financially by the European Union, the French government the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region, the Conseil Général du Nord and the Communauté Urbaine de Lille, today claims to be an essential player in an economy which is continually growing.