Textile Research Careers
Textile research is key to the clothing industry and is the means for the textile industry to create new fibers and improve the quality of existing fibers. This research also helps the industry to understand the behavior of those fibers that are used to create goods for all aspects of our lives.
Textile Research Scientist:
Duties: Research scientists study the technical aspects of fibers and fabrics with the intent of improving existing yarns, fibers, and fabrics in order to create better ones. The technical aspects consist of structure, property and behavior of fibers, and how these fibers are assembled into fibrous structures and fabrics. This research involves developing new fabrics using the most up- to-date chemicals and processes. Research is done to create better quality natural and manmade fibers. Although this type of research is commonly associated with the creation of clothing, it can also be used in medicine to create such textiles as patches for implantation into the human body, and in stem cell research, to name just a few other areas.
Textile Laboratory Technician and Textile Technologist:
Duties: Technicians and technologists are involved in the actual development and production of yarns, fibers, and fabrics that result from the work of the research scientist. Their work can also include the development of new synthetic fibers and fabrics. Their tasks also may include finding ways to improve the look, feel and durability of fabrics. Their tasks may include developing chemical processes to improve the performance of the fabrics, creating new colors for the dyeing process, looking into the creation of more efficient production methods, programming new processes into computers for the textile machines, oversight of the production process, and testing of the fabrics and fibers.
Qualifications: The individual pursuing these careers should have skills in the analysis and interpretation of information. They should have problem solving skills, and skills in creating and designing. These individuals should also be able to understand and forecast trends in the fashion industry. The individual must be able to translate abstract ideas into visual form. There should also be the ability to collaborate with others.
Education: These are positions requiring college degrees or advanced degrees in such areas as textile technology, textile science, materials science or materials technology, the chemical or physical sciences and production or manufacturing engineering.
Further information about these careers can be obtained by clicking on the link for the Career Exploration Center and the Careers Advice websites for information on textile research and other professions
For information about other sewing related occupations, click the links below.