Bainbridge yarn protecting military troops - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Bainbridge yarn protecting military troops

November 22, 2002

Bainbridge - A Southwest Georgia company is helping combat terrorism by fighting the elements of nature. A Bainbridge yarn company makes thermalwear for military troops.

This South Georgia made yarn is protecting American troops from harsh temperatures overseas. American Fibers and Yarns Director of Research and Development, Mac Harrison says, "In the five layer system the military uses, our product goes next to skin. Keeps moisture away from the body."

The yarn is made in Bainbridge and then sent to North Carolina to be knitted and sewn. Eventually it turns into thermalwear, covering the backs of military men and women. AF&Y employee, Tony Griffin, says, "I'm proud to help out the US any way we can."

The khaki yarn is on a roll. This year, AF&Y has produced one million pounds of thermal gear. Harrison explains, "Since September 11th, 2001, our production has gone up for this product for the military. Gearing up for Afghanistan, it gets very cold there."

Next year, the spools will keep rolling. They expect to double production to two million pounds. Harrison adds, "We sell to fabric manufacturers. So, we're a sub contractor with government."

The Innova fibers stay dry and retain body heat. Soldiers can focus on fighting terrorism instead of fighting the cold.

Innova fibers are also used to make dive, ski and surf suits. The five layer system the military uses, including the Innova thermalwear, is capable of going as low as sixty degrees below zero.

Right now, in Afghanistan, overnight temperatures range from upper twenties to lower thirties.

posted at 5:17PM by kathryn.simmons@walb.com