Mercerization Project Developing Wool Baselayers for U.S. Army
September 28, 2018

The American Sheep Industry Association continues to be active in the research and development of new, innovative wool products for the United States military. ASI was a awarded a new R&D contract on Sept. 12 with the United States Army to develop three new American wool fabrics for possible use as baselayers in the Cold Temperature and Arctic Protection System.

The wool for these prototype fabrics will be "mercerized" using a process developed by ASI Education and Technical Services Consultant Roy Kettlewell, and already in global use. The mercerization process reduces the "prickle factor" of wool allowing a broader micron range than normal to be used for baselayer garments. Mercerization is a new product in the United States, which can be processed on the Superwash equipment purchased by ASI and the Sheep Venture Company. The Superwash line is located at Chargeurs Wool USA in Jamestown, S.C.

In addition to the Army, ASI and Chargeurs, Kentwool and Clover Knits will also be participating in this project.