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New Oeko-Tex certification for vehicle interiors
Mar '10
Clever safety systems designed to protect vehicle occupants help to minimise health injuries as a result of accidents. At the same time, air in vehicle interiors that is free of harmful substances represents yet another health-related aspect. To this end the Oeko-Tex Association now offers a new certification option for vehicle interiors according to Oeko-Tex Standard 100.

In addition to the current Oeko-Tex tests for harmful substances, it is now possible to inspect textile products, leather articles, foam, polymer components as well as their fibres and nontextile articles, which are used in the automotive industry, for possible emissions of harmful substances. The ÖTI - Institute for Ecology, Technics and Innovation Ltd. in Vienna has developed a simulation process for determining the emission loading in vehicles, and implemented this process into Oeko-Tex Standard 100 as a supplement. The certification can be applied to individual materials as well as complete vehicle interiors, and relates to products of all processing stages. However, the new emissions tests cannot be used for chemicals, dyes and tools, or for assessments of vehicle cargo areas.

Prerequisite for product certification is compliance with the usual Oeko-Tex requirements and specific additional conditions, which result from use in vehicle interiors. The main difference compared to clothing textiles is the emission of volatile organic substances and odours, which depends mainly on the amount of materials used, the air exchange rate as well as the temperature in the vehicle's interior.

Child seats must correspond with the specifications of the Oeko-Tex product class I (baby articles), and materials of normal vehicle seats with those of product class II for articles that come into direct contact with the skin. All other materials for vehicle roofs, hat racks or floor coverings must meet the requirements of product class IV (decoration materials). Where complete vehicle interiors are to be certified, the sum of all materials and products processed for use in the interior space may not exceed certain emission values.

Oeko-Tex Association

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