HON Reduces Emissions on Seating Products with New Textile Finishing Technology

Aug. 26, 2008

MUSCATINE, IA - A new technology for fabric treatment, offering protection from water and stains with advanced flame retardant properties, is making its way into the mainstream office environment. Through its new partnership with G3 Technology Innovations, LLC (G3i), The HON Company is one of the first manufacturers to offer G3i's GreenShield™ FR finish on its seating, upholstered in 100 percent polyester Striae, Tile and Panorama fabrics.

G3i develops environmentally responsible solutions that eliminate or dramatically reduce the use of chemistries, typically fluorocarbons, in traditional finishes. Fluorocarbons, as identified by the Environmental Protection Agency, are possible carcinogens, and are persistent in the environment and have been found to accumulate in human and animal bodies. 

Traditionally, adding protection to fabrics has been provided by using fluorochemical-based finishes. So a finish with reduced amounts of harmful fluorocarbons, such as Greenshield FR, is a major step for the environment and human health. 

"We achieve more with less," explains Dr. Suresh Sunderrajan, one of G3i's founders. "We can use fewer chemicals to achieve the functionality we need and reduce the amount of treatment textiles require. We make every atom count."

The manufacturing of the GreenShield FR finish by G3i is based upon green nanotechnology principles, a practice that offers the opportunity to head off adverse effects before they occur. The processes used eliminate waste, use ambient temperature and pressure, and also solely use aqueous solvents, thereby no volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are released after application onto the fabric—resulting in improved indoor air quality.

G3i's "more with less" philosophy behind the creation of its GreenShield finishes fits perfectly with The HON Company's ongoing environmental commitment.

"We're constantly searching for ways to reduce the amount of chemicals and emissions that enter the environment," explains Mindy Billingsley, HON's environmental marketing manager. "When we learned about G3i's new textile finishes, we knew they would be a perfect fit for our polyester seating fabrics. "

Kandice Tjebkes, HON's product business manager for surface materials, says the reduction in chemicals in GreenShield FR benefits the appearance and texture of the treated polyester fabrics.

"Unlike other traditional flame-retardant finishes, this one makes the fabric feel ‘normal' instead of giving it a more stiff texture," says Tjebkes. "The fabric's colors remain true to its original palette, as well."

GreenShield FR is certified both as a Low Fluorocarbon Treatment and Indoor Advantage™ Gold by Scientific Certification Systems, a third-party auditor, certifier and standards developer for environmental, sustainable and product quality claims.

For more information about The HON Company, its facilities and its line of furnishings for offices and education, visit www.hon.com.

About The HON Company
The HON Company is a leader in the design and manufacturing of workplace furniture including chairs, files, panel systems, and desks. Headquartered in Muscatine, IA, The HON Company has numerous manufacturing facilities strategically located throughout the United States, and markets its products through a nationwide network of dealers and retailers. For more information, visit www.hon.com.

About G3i
G3 Technology Innovations (G3i) is a technology company dedicated to improving the quality of life by focusing on environmental causes and human health. Based in Pittsford, NY, G3i develops and markets multi-functional nanomaterials products targeted at the textiles, paints and coatings, agricultural, dental and orthopedic industries. For more information, visit www.greenshieldfinish.com.

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of I+S Design, create an account today!