Researchers at the University of Georgia have developed new materials with ideal properties for medical products such as masks and bandages. It is also more environmentally friendly than the materials currently used.
Using non-woven fabrics (fabric made by gluing fibers without weaving or knitting), the team led by Gajanan Bhat was able to make it. Composite material Elastic, breathable, absorbent, Medical products..Incorporate cotton It also makes the resulting material comfortable on the skin ( Medical application) And because it is easy to compost, it is more sustainable compared to similar products currently on the market.
Funded by the US Department of Agriculture, researchers tested different combinations of cotton and non-woven fabric with properties such as breathability, water absorption, and stretchability, along with the original non-woven fabric. The composite fabric worked well in the test, was more breathable, more absorbent and had better stretch recovery, so it could withstand repeated use.
According to a report by Acumen Research and Consulting, the demand for non-woven fabrics has increased in recent years and the market value is expected to reach $ 77 billion in 2027. Non-woven fabrics are used in common household items such as diapers, feminine hygiene products, air filters and water purifiers. They are water resistant, elastic, breathable and capable of filtering air, making them ideal for medical applications.
“Some of these products Biomedical applicationLike band-aids and raps, it requires some stretch and stretch recovery. However, having cotton is really helpful because they come into contact with the body, “said the responsibility of the Textile, Merchandising and Interior Department of the Family and Consumer Services College, which co-authored the dissertation with a master’s student. Said Bert, who is a person. Lead author Partha Sikdar and PhD student Shafiqul Islam.
Cotton is not as elastic as non-woven fabrics, but it is highly absorbent, soft and comfortable to wear. Cotton is also Georgia’s main crop and an important part of the state’s economy. The USDA is looking for new uses for cotton, and Bhat has suggested that they “marry elastic wovens.” fabric Use cotton to make something rich and stretchy. “
Bhat, who specializes in non-woven fabrics, thought that the resulting material could be more comfortable and compostable at the time of disposal while retaining the desired properties of the non-woven fabric.
To test the performance of composites, Bhat, Sikdar and Islam combined cotton with two non-woven fabrics (spunbond and melt blow). Spunbonded non-woven fabrics contain coarser fibers and are generally elastic, while melt-blown non-woven fabrics contain finer fibers, allowing for better filtration capacity.
“The idea is: What combination will give you better performance?” Bart said. “It needs to be elastic with some elasticity, and at the same time breathable and absorbent.”
The team prepared Non-woven We combined fabrics of different thicknesses with one or two cotton fabrics and finally performed 13 different tests.
Tests have shown that the composite fabric has improved water absorption compared to the original non-woven fabric and still maintains good breathability. The water absorption of the composite was 3-10 times higher than that of the cotton-free fabric. The composite also maintained the ability of the non-woven fabric to recover from its stretched state, allowing it to respond to spontaneous movements without losing its shape.
Low-quality cotton can be used in the composite non-woven manufacturing process, and sometimes waste or recycled cotton can be used from the manufacture of T-shirts, bed sheets, etc., said Bhat, a textile and textile professor at the Georgia Athletic Association. I am. Therefore, the resulting product is more sustainable and cheaper to manufacture.
This study was published in the Journal of Industrial Textiles.
Partha Sikdar et al, microstructure and physical properties of composite non-woven fabrics manufactured by incorporating cotton fibers into elastic spunbonds and melt blow webs for medical textiles, Journal of Industrial Textiles (2021). DOI: 10.1177 / 15280837211004287
University of Georgia
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New composites have potential for medical applications
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