The scientists Chinese are reporting the development of a new cotton fabric that cleans itself of stains and bacteria when exposed to sunlight. It will be very amazing when jeans, sweats, or socks that clean and de-odorize themselves when hung on a clothesline in the sun or draped on a balcony railing. Scientists are reporting the development of a new cotton fabric that cleans itself of stains and bacteria when exposed to sunlight.
Chinese researchers Mingce Long and Deyong Wu report in the American Chemical Society journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces that their fabric uses a coating made from a compound of titanium dioxide, the white material used in everything from white paint to foods to sunscreen lotions.
The visible-light-induced self-cleaning property of cotton has been realized by coating N-TiO2 film and loading AgI particles simultaneously. The physical properties were characterized by means of XRD, SEM, TEM, XPS, and DRS techniques. The visible light photocatalytic activities of the materials were evaluated using the degradation of methyl orange. In comparison with TiO2–cotton, the dramatic enhancement in the visible light photocatalytic performance of the AgI–N–TiO2–cotton could be attributed to the synergistic effect of AgI and N–TiO2, including generation of visible light photocatalytic activity and the effective electron–hole separations at the interfaces of the two semiconductors. The photocatalytic activity of the AgI–N–TiO2–cotton was fully maintained upon several numbers of photodegradation cycles. In addition, according to the XRD patterns of the AgI–N–TiO2–cotton before and after reaction, AgI was stable in the composites under visible light irradiation. Moreover, a possible mechanism for the excellent and stable photocatalytic activity of AgI–N–TiO2–cotton under visible light irradiation was also proposed.
Titanium dioxide breaks down dirt and kills microbes when exposed to some types of light. It already has found uses in self-cleaning windows, kitchen and bathroom tiles, odor-free socks and other products.
While self-cleaning cotton fabrics have been made in the past, they self-clean thoroughly only when exposed to ultraviolet rays. Further dispersing nanoparticles composed of silver and iodine accelerated the discoloration process, and the coating remained intact after washing and drying.
AgI; N-TiO2; visible-light-induced; self-cleaning; low thermal resistance