February 22, 2008
Kuraray Fastening Co., Ltd.
Kuraray Fastening Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Osaka; President: Mitsuhiko Takaoka; hereafter "Kuraray Fastening"), a manufacturer and marketer of MAGIC TAPE hook and loop fasteners and MAGILOCK extrusion-molded hook fasteners, has participated in the Open Lab system implemented by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). On this occasion, it has determined that Kuraray Fastening's MAGIC TAPE hook-and-loop fastener will be used for the clothing ("J-WEAR") that Japanese astronaut Takao Doi will wear during his stay at the International Space Station ("ISS").
In the "Living Unit for Outer Space Life in the Near Future" (Leader: Professor Yoshiko Taya, Division of Clothing, Graduate School of Home Economies, Japan Women's University; hereafter "Unit"), one of the joint study themes carried out at the Open Lab, various R&D activities have been conducted for onboard garments for the purpose of supporting people's life in the ISS. In the Unit's development of a daily outfit for life aboard a spaceship, Kuraray's heat-resistant NEW ECO MAGIC(*) of the MAGIC TAPE lineup was employed as a part of space materials creation because such materials require both safety and comfort.
The heat-resistant NEW ECO MAGIC uses polypropylene sulfide (PPS) fibers with excellent heat and flame resistance. They are environmentally toxin-free, also boasting excellence in such onboard requirements as safety and offgas venting operations. In addition, the NEW ECO MAGIC has the advantage of providing less discomfort in one's motion compared with other hook-and-loop fasteners, owing to its soft texture. NEW ECO MAGIC will be used on the sides of short and long trousers of J-WEAR, which consists of a shirt, pants, trousers, trunks-type underwear and socks, for practical use in removable outer pockets and fixing objects (stationery including notebooks and pencils, as well as food trays) in the zero-gravity environment.
Kuraray plans to contribute to the development of the aerospace industry, while expanding the sales of NEW ECO MAGIC by means of the environment-responsive production system.
|Sponsored by||the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)|
|Objective||This program aims for the creation of new space businesses and applies existing technologies to outer space from a collaboration between private companies with unique business ideas and technological excellence and JAXA, with its knowledge of space technologies|
|System||Companies can participate in the system through registration on JAXA Web site. When a company is certified as a unit member, it can receive technological advice from JAXA, and in cases where the company submits an excellent idea, such company can utilize JAXA's research funds.|
|Unit leader||Professor Yoshiko Taya of Japan Women's University|
|Objective||Development of new onboard garments with various functions necessary aboard a spaceship by incorporating technologies of private companies that are/are not involved in space development, with the aim of providing astronauts with a comfortable lifestyle aboard a spaceship|
|Participants||GOLDWIN TECHNICAL CENTER, INC., SHIMA SEIKI MFG., LTD., Kuraray Fastening Co., Ltd., Toray Industries, Inc., Space Systems Development Corporation|