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New cotton fabric 'self-cleans' in ordinary sunlight

16
Dec '11
A new cotton fabric that can clean itself of stains when exposed to ordinary sunlight has been developed by Chinese scientists, according to American Chemical Society (ACS).

Self-cleaning cotton fabrics that were made earlier showed the property only when exposed to ultraviolet rays. The newly developed fabric takes a step further as it can clean itself even in the presence of ordinary sunlight.

The new fabric has a coating of nanoparticles made from a compound of titanium dioxide and nitrogen. The presence of silver and iodine in the dispersing nanoparticles accelerate the discolouration process in the presence of sunlight.

The scientists said the coated material removed an orange dye stain when exposed to sunlight and the coating remained intact even after washing and drying.

Titanium dioxide is the white material that is used in sunscreen lotions and white paints. It kills bacteria and breaks down dirt if kept under some types of light. It is currently being used in kitchen and bathroom tiles, self-cleaning windows, odour-free socks and other products, according to ACS' journal 'Applied Materials & Interfaces'.

The research was funded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China and Donghua University, Shanghai.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - China


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