Umbrella brand for textile research in Germany

Forschungskuratorium Textil e. V. (FKT)

In co-operation with 16 textile research institutes nation-wide, Forschungskuratorium Textil e. V. (FKT) coordinates as umbrella organisation the industrial collective research activities on the field of fiber-based materials. FKT is one of 100 members of Arbeitsgemeinschaft industrieller Forschungsvereinigungen "Otto von Guericke" e. V. (AiF).

Spun EcoYarn - SPEY: Economical spinning of short staple fibres of poly (lactic acid)

Economical production of staple fiber yarns from modified PLA fibers with lower degradation tendency

to project page

Textil e. V.

For more than 60 years now, FKT coordinates a network of actually 16 textile research institutes in Germany. About 1.200 researchers participate in national and EU funding schemes to develop new technologies and innovations in the field of fiber-based materials and textile composites giving input into many industrial growth sectors.


Umbrella organisation

FKT encompasses the Central Confederation of the German Textile and Fashion Industry as well as the regional and trade associations with the aim of promoting and coordinating collective and cooperative research projects.

Logo Gesamtverband textil+mode

This unique textile research network links education, research and economy. Collective research projects initiated by SME are funded on a pre-competitive level in the scheme of Industrielle Gemeinschaftsforschung (IGF) by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.

Due to these research activities textile industry converted to a material supplier constantly renewing products, processes and services. FKT accelerates knowledge transfer of research results into SME by linking industry and science.

YouTube Logo The Forschungskuratorium introduces itself


Trendease Podcast 28: Dr. Klaus Jansen

Interview with Dr. Klaus Jansen on the occasion of Techtextil/ Texprocess fairs 2015.
Download Podcast (mp3, 2MB)

Dipl.-Ing. Franz-Jürgen Kümpers

Franz-Jürgen Kümpers


Dr. Frauke Susanne Hänsch

Prof. Dr. Holger Erth

Michael Kamm

Stefan Ruholl

Dr. Uwe Mazura

Dr. Uwe Mazura

Managing member

of the Executive Board

Johannes Diebel

Johannes Diebel

Head of Research

Fon: +49 30 726220-40

Fax: +49 30 726220-140

Alexandra Hesse

Alexandra Hesse

Assistance to Managing Director

Fon: +49 30 726220-41

Fax: +49 30 726220-141

Christa Ehrlich

Christa Ehrlich


Fon: +49 30 726220-43

Fax: +49 30 726220-143

Torsten Brüning

Torsten Brüning


Fon: +49 30 726220-42

Fax: +49 30 726220-142

Textile research

Industrial solutions from the institutes

Germany has a strong network of textile research centers. The high-performance institutes are located in the former historical centers of the textile industry in Baden-Wuerttemberg, North Rhine-Westphalia, Saxony and Thuringia. Thanks to them, the textile industry has turned from a traditional sector for clothing, home textiles and fashion into the world’s largest producer and exporter of technical textiles.

Herstellung von CFK-Prüfkörpern

Production of CFP-testing material at the FIBRE institute in Bremen

Copyright: FIBRE

Beneficiaries are aviation, automotive and logistics as well as the construction and machine building sectors or the health care and energy industry. Smart Textiles or fibers with new surface properties are used more and more for clothing and home textiles.

Textile research gives priority to material research. It focusses mainly on new materials, fibers’ and fabric’s properties, composites, surface functionalization, production and processing technologies, material safety, value chain, resource efficiency and sustainability.


Considerable turnover with product innovations

Technical textiles – decades ago only irrelevant in the textile industry – are nowadays a flagship of the sector with an export ratio of 43 percent and are high tech materials being the basis for innovations in other industry sectors. Some keywords: lightweight construction, functional surfaces or more efficient technologies. Fiber based materials enable break-through innovations in almost every economic sector. According to official statistics the whole textile industry, where half of the turnover is made with technical textiles, did invest about 133 million Euros for research and development in 2012.

Recent investigations in Germany prove textile producers and application-oriented material suppliers having a great deal of innovation capacity. More then 25 percent of their turnover is generated by new products, which is third rank behind the automotive and the electronic industry.

Textile Lichtbetonfassaden

Colors, logos, characters: bright prospects for textile translucent concrete

Copyright: ITA

80 people • textile Forschungskuratoriums

About 80 people supported the project “Perspectives 2025” with their ideas

Industry’s journey through time

The time-travel, initialized from the textile research and guided by a future pilot, into the following decades is an example for other (traditional) sectors in Germany as well: The foresight project “Perspectives 2025” was finished in the end of 2012 following the subject “Doing the thinkable, instead of thinking the feasible!”. Once again the textile industry has confirmed its reputation of being one of the most innovative sectors in the country, right after automotive and engineering.

Accompanied by the future guide

Companion on the tour to the future of the middle of the 21st century was future pilot Thomas Strobel from Munich, who is said to be quite industry-oriented. With his methodology of the future map 10 subjects (apparel, food, health, living, mobility, architecture, future city, energy, production/logistics, basic themes) have been identified as especially relevant for growth and therefore have been analyzed. Two figures of speech have been introduced into the project by Mr. Strobel: “driving with foresight” and “develop a gut feeling for the tomorrow”. Born in 1963 Strobel became an engineer and has worked in strategy and planning teams for companies such as Siemens and other telecommunication firms. With his services and methods the expert is specialized on systematically planning the future and improved knowledge management in medium-sized enterprises.



Two steps forward, one step back. If you want to know, what is needed in the year 2025, it is necessary, to look at 2050 first.

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Two steps forward, one step back. If you want to know, what is needed in the year 2025, it is necessary, to look at 2050 first.

In the project “Perspectives 2025” Forschungskuratorium Textil travelled into a far future to derive the research guidelines for the next 10 – 15 years. This process is called “Retropolation”. After jumping to the year 2050 pictures of this future help to develop a gut feeling for the tomorrow. Viewing back to 2025 based on documented propositions those developments are deducted that have to be realized in the year 2025.

Guidelines for research activities in the period between today and 15 years in advance result from this time travel. Core of the methodology is to withstand the temptation predicting the future by extrapolating the presence with experiences from the past.


Steps in the project

There was a core team of 10 people, managing the whole process and working out the premises for the future images of 2050.

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There was a core team of 10 people, managing the whole process and working out the premises for the future images of 2050.

Around 80 representatives from universities, companies and associations as well as students from different disciplines participated in five regional future-workshops organized in Aachen, Dresden and Denkendorf to work on project related questions. Due to that experts influencing future developments and young people who will live in this future contributed with their experiences and imaginations to create a panorama like picture.

10 core topics have been worked on with a world-coffee-like method: architecture, apparel, energy, food, health care, mobility, production/logistics, living, future city and a horizontal field of basics related to all other core topics.


Research subjects

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New materials with intelligent features appear on the rapidly changing market; clothing becomes closer to nature, more functional and more individual.

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Textile as the 5th building material will have a new and exciting field of application, e.g. as roof for stadiums or airports.

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Basic subjects

New fields of application for textile materials are based on ageing population, climate change, the shortage of resources or the increasing world population.

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Fibre based materials do already support the change of the German energy policy. They do play a major role also concerning the carbon-neutral usage of regenerative energy sources.

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Textiles with topsoil function have chances but are more likely something for the future. The food and packaging industry on the other hand waits for new textile surfaces and functions.

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Future City

According to gathering pace in urbanization even in Europe functional textiles support individualization and flexibility of the residents.

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Medical textiles such as stents, artificial cartilage or fat tissue and heart valve replacements are strongly arising. Textile components get more important to improve the mobility in old age.

Living Icon


Functional textiles change the living. Textile room dividers, glowing curtains, heating walls, self-cleaning carpets and floor covering with sensors are currently rising.

Mobility Icon


No matter if aircraft or car: in the future textile lightweight construction will be more and more important than nowadays. By the integration of functions surfaces shine and seats are heated or cooled.

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Production / Logistics

High-performance textile materials are first choice, when producing due to environmental compliance, saving resources and recycling-friendly design.


Well connected

The Forschungskuratorium Textil, cluster organization and link between textile research institutes, universities and industry is well connected on a national and international level. Research and development activities benefit from resulting synergies.

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Using examples from real life and from research, the brochures of the Forschungskuratorium Textil give a good overview of the current state of research and development of technical textiles and fiber-based materials as well as of the transfer of this knowledge into the medium-sized industry.

Techtex & Automotive

Fibre-based materials for mobility tomorrow