Development of Antimicrobial and Water Repellent Treatments for Cotton and Wool Knit Fabric by Plasma Technology
Natural fibers, such as cotton and wool, provide an environment with heat, moisture and oxygen that facilitates the growth of microorganisms and ultimately leads to malodor and deterioration of garments. To solve these problems, chemical finishes are utilized for antimicrobial and water repellent treatments, where chemicals are typically applied through wet processing. Large amount of water and huge cost for wastewater treatment would be required for the wet processes.
Plasma technology, a pollution free, safe, cost effective and waterless process, can be a new approach for antimicrobial and water repellent treatments. It is a well-developed process and can be applied on a wide range of materials. The treatment only applies on the surface and therefore the bulk properties of the material can be retained. This project rides on the research effort of HKPC’s industrial-scale plasma system in minimizing pilling to further develop antimicrobial and water repellent treatments on cotton and wool with plasma technology for industrial use.
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