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In 1984 a small laboratory was set up at the Textile Training and Services Centre with the assistance of UNDP/UNIDO to support the product development and quality assurance work undertaken by the Centre.  However,  as a result of gradual increase in demand for testing for industry and procurement agencies,  in the laboratory commenced testing  textile and garments for those who needed the assistance to verify the conformity of products to various specification requirements.  In 1995, it was decided to introduce an internationally accepted quality assurance system in 1995 to provide better service to the clients.
 
At this juncture the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) came to assist the Centre with a project type technical cooperation programme to entrance the quality assurance capabilities of the Centre including the laboratory.  It was under this project that most of the new equipments such as UV visual spectrophtometer, FTIR spectrophotometer and uster tester-4 yarn irregularity and imperfection tester etc. have been installed while most of the senior staff members of the laboratory were sent to Japan for further training in testing and quality assurance of
textiles, garments and allied products.  Thereafter, the laboratory planned a strategy to apply ISO 9002 : 1994 quality assurance system first and then to upgrade it with application of  quality system specified in ISO 17025:1999 standard.
 
The laboratory received ISO 9002 : 1994 certification in 1998 and upgraded the quality system to ISO 9001 : 2000 in year 2001 as the first ever government organization to received the certification for new millennium standard.  While laboratory quality system was upgraded to ISO 9001 : 2000 standard laboratory also commenced applying laboratory quality management systems as per the ISO 17025 : 1999 standard with UNDP/UNIDO assistance under integrated industrial development project for which laboratory received accreditation for Swedish Accreditation Board (SWEDAC).  Under ISO 17025 : 1999 standard laboratory obtained accreditation for 14 identified tests which is frequently required by the export garment industry for their product development and verification of product conformity to buyers specification.
 
The tests that have been accredited for ISO 17025 : 1999 standards are
Textile Fibre Mixtures - quantitative chemical analysis
Determination of pH of aqueous extract
Mass per unit length, Mass per unit area
Resistance to surface wetting (Spray test)
Dimensional change in washing & drying
Fabric propensity to Surface Fuzzing (Pilling Box method)
Maximum Force (strip & grab methods)
Force for seam rupture (Grab test)
Tear Force-Ballistic pendulum method (Elmendorf)
Tests for Colour Fastness    
 
The laboratory is also recognized as an independent tests house by many internal textile and apparel retailers such as Limited Brand USA and Bhs, Tesco, Ethel Austin, Sainsbury, Wool worthy, Burden, Home base, Adams children wear, Safeway and Mother care.  The laboratory is also has became the show place for the marketing the other services such as training and consultancy offered by the institute and is offering its services to the neighboring countries.  Institute has already trained few trainees from Pakistan standard Board and from Vietnam to laboratory quality system and tests procedures.  Institute is also receiving many inquires for carry out training and consultancy work for setting up textile testing laboratories from neighboring countries.
 
The laboratory is also recognized as an independent tests house by many internal textile and apparel retailers such as Limited Brand USA and Bhs, Tesco, Ethel Austin, Sainsbury, Wool worthy, Burden, Home base, Adams children wear, Safeway and Mother care.  The laboratory is also has became the show place for the marketing the other services such as training and consultancy offered by the institute and is offering its services to the neighboring countries.  Institute has already trained few trainees from Pakistan standard Board and
from Vietnam to laboratory quality system and tests procedures.  Institute is also receiving many inquires for carry out training and consultancy work for setting up textile testing laboratories from neighboring industry.  The laboratory is equipped to perform tests in accordance with ISO, ASTM, AATCC, BS, JTS and SLS standards and with the expansion of the laboratory the garment industrialists who were dependent on foreign laboratories for their testing requirement now have a service in Sri Lanka at a lower cost and in a shorter time.  This gives the local industry a “Competitive Edge” to overcome the challenges posed by foreign competitors.  The staff of the laboratory is highly committed to cater to their customers and working as a team to satisfy the needs of their which has been incorporated into their working life and serving the industry best of their ability.
 
LIST OF TESTS WE PROVIDE