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'Coir umbrella' to provide protection against UV rays
Nov '11
A special kind of umbrella that can provide protection against ultraviolet (UV) rays has been prepared by researchers at the Central Coir Research Institute (CCRI), based in the south Indian State of Kerala.

CCRI has applied for patent for the umbrella prepared from a blend of coir and cotton.

Director of CCRI, US Sharma, said the research undertaken at CCRI's Kalavoor-based headquarters, in the vicinity of Alappuzha, has established that coir has a capacity to block UV rays.

Pursuant to the research, CCRI had made a house from coir and after over two years of tests and trials, it was discovered that the lignin in coir has an ability to stop UV rays, Mr. Sharma said.

He added that UV rays, which are responsible for causing skin cancer, are the main roadblock in the way of umbrella manufacturers as an umbrella made from cotton or polyester cannot block UV rays.

The Institute has prepared two kinds of umbrellas, one of a usual size and the other of a bigger size that is normally used at beaches and golf courses.

Big umbrellas, prepared from cotton or polyester, are usually meant for providing a cover against sun's rays on the beaches, but these cannot provide protection against UV rays. Golf courses in western countries also make extensive use of these big umbrellas as a temporary shelter.

The design and material used for preparing the frames of the coir umbrella is the same as usual umbrellas. However, in spite of its distinguished ability to provide protection against UV rays, the coir umbrella is not meant for use in rain.

Coir Board Chairman VS Vijayaraghavan informed that on receiving the patent, the Board would sell the technical expertise rights for these umbrellas to public parties.

He informed that some entrepreneurs have shown interest in the product during the ongoing Trade Fair at New Delhi, where different types of umbrellas prepared by the CCRI have been put up for display.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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