Tinsulate – properties and characteristics of the material, the use of insulation in the manufacture of jackets and shoes

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More than 20 years ago, the American company 3M (Minnesote Mining Manufacturing) set itself the task of creating a heater for space suits. At the same time, a technology was developed for the production of synthetic material based on microfibers, which surpassed swan fluff in its heat-saving characteristics. The created material was named Tinsulate (from the English. Thin – thin, insulation – insulation). In recent years, this material has replaced synthetic winterizer in the production of a wide range of warm clothes for adults, children, skiers and polar explorers..

What is tinsulate

The creators of the tinsuleit tried to come up with material that can hold and hold a large amount of air. For this, hollow polyester microfibers were created, externally coated with silicone 2-10 microns thick, which is 50 times thinner than human hair. For elasticity, the fibers are given a spiral shape, which makes the material work like a spring – to quickly restore volume after deformation or compression. The light weight of the fibers and the ability to hold more air predetermined the advantage of this material over other heaters.

Insulation production

Tinsulate is produced by 3M since 1973, and its creation began on the lines for the production of adhesive tape (adhesive tape). The basis of the creation are polyesters based on organic polymers. At the initial stage, the melting of polyethylene terephthalate produces polyester fibers. The created hollow thin thread is covered with a layer of silicone, then, with the help of the increased temperature, the fibers are spiral-shaped, several layers are formed from their array by thermal bonding. The resulting material is able to accommodate and hold a large amount of air.

Thinsulate insulation

Tinsulate properties

The physical properties of the microfiber structure of the material have led to the creation of several properties necessary for high-quality insulation. These characteristics of the tinsuleit turned out to be in demand for the production of space equipment of American astronauts. After that, 3M company continued to work on improving the material, which currently has a lot of extremely useful properties for the consumer. Thanks to the three-dimensional heat-welded spatial structure, the Tinsulate insulation has many features, the main ones:

  • low hygroscopicity – absorbs moisture 70 times less than natural heaters;
  • high environmental friendliness, non-toxicity and hypoallergenicity, which meets high international standards;
  • heat-shielding properties 50% higher than natural fluff filler;
  • resistance to getting wet, washing, no shrinkage, wear resistance.

Among the shortcomings, in comparison with other types of insulation, it is worth noting:

  • higher cost;
  • ability of synthetic materials to accumulate static electricity;
  • danger of overheating if the rules for use are not followed and if ventilation is not available.

To what temperature does the tinsulate filler withstand

The ability to create a multilayer insulation material from tinsulate layers allows you to produce a variety of ready-made clothing items – jackets, gloves, hats, thermal underwear, shoes for work and leisure. The maximum limit value of low temperature at which products with a tinsulate insulation were tested is -60 degrees C. The high heat capacity and low weight of products with this insulation makes it possible to create on its basis thermally protected workwear for polar explorers, divers, climbers.


The main advantage of tinsuleit is a smaller thickness with the same thermal protection compared to other heaters. Depending on the scope of application of different types of material, there is their gradation in increasing material density – C, B, Tib and P. Moreover, type C is the lightest type, B, Tib is medium, and P is the most dense. Especially for the creation of overalls for employees of enterprises in the oil and gas sector, the Ministry of Emergencies created the FR type with the inclusion of meta-aramid fire-resistant fibers in the insulation structure. The main types of material differ in density, elasticity, cost:

  • Ultra – the densest in the line of types of this material, is used in areas that do not impose strict requirements on the weight and volume of the finished product – for hiking and skiing suits.
  • Classic – a classic version of the insulation with average frost protection, density. It is applied to demi-season clothes.
  • Flex – the most flexible and thinner Thinsulate insulation in this line for professional sports.
  • LiteLoft – a filler that can be squeezed several times, is expensive and is used in the manufacture of sleeping bags and other climbing equipment.
  • Ultra Extreme Perfomance for Footwear – design of a special insulation material for creating clothing that ensures the survival of a person in extreme weather conditions.

Material application

The excellent properties of the new insulation have become in demand in the production of a number of consumer goods. The top model warmed clothes for the autumn-winter season are in the most demand:

  • a jacket or a winter coat on tinsuleit turns out to be more elegant and lighter than traditional down jackets based on natural down or synthetic winterizer;
  • sportswear, trousers, jackets for winter sports less restrict movement, while remaining warm, reliable;
  • shoes for slushy periods in cities, for travel or climbers;
  • additional elements of the wardrobe – gloves, hats;
  • highly specialized clothing – thermal underwear, diving suits, overalls for employees of the northern latitudes, employees of the Ministry of Emergencies, firefighters, rescuers.

Tinsulate Jacket


The most versatile – type C insulation is mainly used for tailoring model urban outerwear, jackets, leather goods, knitwear, gloves, hats. It consists of 65% polyolefin fiber, 35% of polyester fiber. A jacket with a tinsulate is more beautiful and less heavy than a down jacket for down, synthetic winterizer or holofiber. The flexibility of this insulation, high extensibility and resistance to compression of the lining make it possible to create models of jackets without frequent quilting. It is available in three versions:

  • C – without interlining intermediate strip;
  • CS – with a one-sided non-woven gasket, which is attached to the tinsulate layer by ultrasonic welding;
  • CDS – double sided non-woven gasket.

Depending on the modification of each of these insulation options, its density and thickness change:


Density, g / sq. m

Thickness mm

C / CDS 40



C / CS / CDS 70



C / CS / CDS 100



C / CS / CDS 150



C / CS / CDS 200



C / CS 250




For the production of overalls, the thickest insulation for Tinsulate clothing is used – type R. Using this material, everyday and professional outerwear, gloves, mittens, boots for people working in the Arctic Circle are made. These clothes are characterized by high rates of fabric thickness, thermal insulation, the ability to use in strong winds and sudden weather changes. At the same time, overalls retain their flexibility and do not interfere with the performance of professional duties. Characteristics of the finished material of grade P:


Density, g / m

Thickness cm

P 100



P 150



P 230



Designed specifically for employees involved in fire and explosive work, the FR insulation option is used for sewing outerwear, jackets, trousers, mittens, gloves, and fireproof shoes. Various modifications of such a heater have the following characteristics:


Density, g / m

Thickness cm

FR 120



FR 150



FR 200



Thermal underwear

One of the important elements of clothing for residents of the North, workers and military personnel of the Far North is thermal underwear. The use as a heater for its creation of a tinsulate can reduce the entire product, make it more elastic and pleasant in everyday wear. This linen does not lose its properties during repeated washing, drying or dry cleaning. Such thermal underwear is used by climbers, skiers, lifeguards. It is in demand by fans of hunting and fishing, in which sedentary methods of extraction are replaced by vigorous actions..

Thermal underwear

Ski shoes and accessories

Special for the manufacture of heat-resistant shoes is type B tinsuleita. For this purpose, a layer of insulation filler is made of high density and small thickness. This provides an opportunity for manufacturers of ski shoes, ski gloves to make samples of reduced weight, good design, durability, reliability. The characteristics of various modifications of this type of insulation are presented in the table:


Density, g / m

Thickness cm

B 100



B 200



B 400



Diving suits

Specific requirements are imposed in the manufacture of diving equipment and suits. They must be elastic, durable, have minimal hygroscopicity. Thinsulate, which complements the clothing for divers with high heat resistance, meets all these requirements. This becomes especially important when working at great depths or under ice. Many divers and scuba divers use socks made of tinsulate, which are hydrophobic. This means that they, even being completely wet, will retain more than 70% of the original heat.

Household items and baby products

High-quality insulation is needed not only for clothing, but also for a large list of household items. For these purposes, the TIB type is used, which is used in the manufacture of sportswear, blankets, rugs, pillows, sleeping bags. The absence of allergies to this material, resistance to high humidity, waterproof properties, good thermal insulation make this material attractive for creating things for children. To create overalls, baby blankets, envelopes, it is possible to use thicker insulation cloths, which has the following parameters:


Density, g / m

Thickness cm

TIB 100



TIB 120



TIB 200



Thinsulate Care

The durability of the use of any thing depends on the proper operation and proper care of it. Given the high cost of things with this insulation, it is advisable to choose dry cleaning. When washing products, including artificial tinsulate filler, water with a temperature of no higher than 30-40 degrees is required. Hand washing is desirable with the use of liquid detergents, while Thinsulate is not afraid of prolonged soaking.

Machine wash should be done in delicate modes with a temperature setting of no higher than 40 degrees and a spin speed of no more than 600 revolutions per minute. The products are dried at room temperature, on ordinary coat hanger. Do not hang things on radiators whose temperature is above 40 degrees C. It is not recommended to steam things with this material in order to avoid damage.



The table below shows the prices for products of the Moscow region that use Tinsulate materials as insulation:



Price, rubles

Mittens Red Fox Thinsulate



Gloves DDE winter-COMFORT (Thinsulate), M



Winter boots Norfin Snow Gray-20C



Climbing shoe covers BASK LEGGINS THL 64



Snowboard suit ROXY 2017-18 IMPRESSION



Heater for drysuit, LIGHT CDS 40



Jacket Winter Norfin Air



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