A new synthetic turf pitch is being installed for the Dutch premier league football club Heracles Almelo and it will use an innovative new type of synthetic turf from TenCate. The turf will be made using a new weaving technology that brings an optimum playing performance through the way the ball reacts on it, and then, when the turf has reached the end of its life it will be fully recyclable.

TenCate has come up with a new weaving process that provides the grass with a greater resilience to the flattening process. What normally happens with most third generation sports synthetic turf surfaces is that the grass fibers begin to flatten over time and constant use. This is a twofold problem in that the performance of the ball is reduced and the field takes on a far more artificial appearance.

The weaving process with the synthetic turf used for the new pitch is a multilayer process that allows the fibers to take on the job of the infill to some extent. As well as keeping the fibers standing more upright for longer the weaving process will also give the synthetic turf a longer lifespan.

This new weaving technology from TenCate has another positive aspect and that is that the process allows a consistency of raw materials to be used throughout and this means that the pitch can be recycled far more cost effectively when the time comes.

The weaving process that will be used for the Heracles stadium will provide better coverage over the polyolefin infill. The tufts of grass that will be used to create the playing surface will be more tightly packed and will be made up of fibres of different structure and composition. It will be more pleasing to the eye and will give the pitch a more natural appearance because the yarns can be woven into the structure at varying distances and depths which will ensure there are no grass stripes formed as a result.

TenCate will be bringing this new version of its synthetic turf to the market under the name of its partner GreenFields Sports Turf Systems. The various TenCate synthetic turf products that will be distributed using this new weaving technology will do so through a number of different partners in order to increase the reach around the world.

‘In the past a loose natural grass tuft could affect the final score in a negative way. We can now state that the synthetic turf tuft as we produce it will make a positive difference’, says Hugo de Vries, commercial director of GreenFields. ‘Unlike traditional tuft methods, the new weaving technology enables us to incorporate larger tufts of synthetic turf with a different structure and height into the top layer. This gives a very natural effect, without the disadvantages of a natural grass pitch.’

For companies such as GreenFields as well as for installers the marketing of this weaving concept will also reduce the risk. The product is produced by a single party as a complete product, with fewer critical production steps. Hugo de Vries: ‘The fact that TenCate is responsible for the entire production process means that end-users will have a greater degree of confidence in the performance and sustainability of the top layer. GreenFields too is constantly engaged in innovating synthetic turf systems and in improving its quality. This innovation process has been strengthened thanks to the intensive collaboration with TenCate.’

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