The leader in weaving machine and technology has participated in ITMA 2019 with big bang innovations that attracted visitors from across the world to witness it live. Among host of new innovations, Picanol’s OmniPlus-i Airjet weaving machine and digitised weft insertion in Rapier weaving were showstoppers. Picanol has also set higher speed, productivity, efficiency as well as technology benchmarks in weaving machines that the company offers. In short, the company has set direction for future fabric production machinery and technology. Textile Excellence spoke to P. Kasiviswanathan, Director, Picanol India Pvt. Ltd. and below is an excerpt for our readers.
Picanol has come to ITMA with several innovations and a mammoth stall. How have been Picanol’s presence and a brief of technology on offer at ITMA 2019 Barcelona?
At Picanol stall, we have 10 latest weaving machines on display. Among them, 5 airjet machines, 4 rapier machines and one terry rapier loom. Also, we have two more machines at satellite stalls – a rapier machine at the Bonas stall and a terry airjet machine at the Stäubli booth, which makes it 12 machines in total we had on displayed at ITMA 2019 Barcelona.
We have launched our latest generation airjet weaving machine ‘OmniPlus-i’ in this show and this was on display in our stall. This machine comes with several innovations which are not only the new technology benchmarks but also cares for sustainable and digital aspects. We have brought new innovations with different shedding motion, cam box and dobby and we have also introduced revolutionary smart shed and so on. We have 5 different rapier machines for different application like coating fabric, denim, geotextile ground cover, furnishing fabric and terry towel fabric, etc. We are now working on converting customer queries into orders.
OmniPlus-I has been the centre of attraction among visitors. Would you elaborate more on this latest weaving sensation?
The OmniPlus-i has been centre of attraction as it is the most advanced airjet weaving machine as on date and developed with Picanol’s four leading design principles.
- Smart Performance: Machine performance is first among the design principles at Picanol. In most cases, the gap between theoretical maximum speed of a weaving machine and actual running speed in the mills is very large. Therefore, Picanol’s machines are conceived around the principle of ‘Smart Performance’. This means that an intelligent machine design is combined with self-learning software which helps achieving the best possible practical speed and real performance under any given circumstances.
- Sustainability Inside: Reducing energy consumption and waste prevention are core design principles at Picanol. Our machines are conceived with a built-in capacity for sustainability for years. The pioneering Sumo Drive concept is still the most energy efficient main drive available. The OmniPlus-i also equipped with further resources saving features through modified relay nozzle distance and stable weft insertion. Sustainability is also about waste management, which Picanol machines not only reduce, but we try to avoid completely. The EcoFill feature serves as an excellent example.
- Driven by Data: Picanol has been working with digitalisation in the weaving process for years. Today, when everybody realises that future is in digitisation and Industry 4.0, our machines can capture data, made accessible and usable for production optimisation and artificial intelligence. Our SmartShed – fully electronically controlled shedding mechanism is a step towards this digital revolution. I can just say that self-setting weaving machine is just around the corner.
- Intuitive Control: Picanol’s machines have always user centric design. So, the latest OmniPlus-i is also integrated with this design concept, making all operations and interventions intuitive, easy and self-explanatory to the weaver.
How has been the response for Picanol at the show?
I would judge the response as very good. Our stall was always crowded especially when the machines were running. Before the show, we were not sure of how the response would be, but I must say that the response we received was much above our expectations. We have received many new customers and our existing customers at our stall from all around the globe. Especially, we received visitors in large numbers from India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and South America.
What are the emerging trends in the Indian market?
Indian market is fairly large and produces almost all types of fabrics. But if categorised based on end-use, products like bottom weight, shirting, sheeting and denim fabrics are growing areas. Cotton fabrics are still the most favourite while blended fabrics are gaining market share rapidly. So, both airjet and rapier weaving machines are on demand.