UV-protecting textiles

Actual project

Dresses for the summer time have to be light-weighted and light-shaded. Unfortunately these textiles offer the lowest protection against the harmful ultraviolet radiation. Nanoparticulate materials as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are employed in sun creams for years. The mentioned oxides are colourless but strongly absorb ultraviolet radiation. As nanoparticles the oxides are furthermore to small to scatter visible light. As a result the nanoparticles properly protect against the harmful radiation but are “invisible”. The application of such particles on textiles allows the preparation of the demanded light-weighted and light-shaded summer clothing offering a high ultraviolet protection factor. The investigations a the DTNW are focused in the synthesis of appropriate particle systems by sol-gel technique and the development of binder systems based on inorganic organic hybrid polymers. Cotton fabrics modified with the corresponding composites achieve highest ultraviolet protection factors (UPF – comparable to what is known from sun creams). UV-protection is not only of interest for health protection but also for protecting fibre materials used in extreme environmental conditions against decomposition by UV-light.

Project funded by financial support of the federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia
contact: Dr. Torsten Textor, Tel.: +49 2151-843-159, textor@dtnw.de