Creating an interconnected PVA nanofibrous membrane on cotton fabrics by dip-coating of PDMS–TMS for versatile protection without compromising comfort
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Performance textiles with versatile protective surface and well-preserved comfort are highly demanded but hard to achieve due to the challenge in developing functionalized surface without affecting the porous structure of textiles. Incorporation of nanofibrous materials into textiles has shown its potential but a combination mechanism between the textile substrate and nanocomponents is needed to balance the protection and comfort with durability. This research aims to introduce the binding mechanism to nanofibrous coated textiles through a finishing process. We developed nanocomposites of a surface functionalized nanofibrous membrane on cotton fabrics by applying a polydimethylsiloxane–trimethylated silica (PDMS–TMS) dip-coating as the solution. The as-fabricated nanofibrous membrane enhanced cotton fabric was characterized by SEM and FTIR spectroscopy, and its protection against water, aqueous liquids and chemicals was implemented to test the versatile protection. Besides, the air permeability and moisture management properties of the coated fabrics were tested to confirm the comfort of the coated fabrics. The surface of cotton fabrics was changed from hydrophilic to hydrophobic with a water contact angle of 135°, due to the crosslinking and combination between PDMS–TMS and PVA nanofibrous membrane. It was also found that the combination of PVA nanofibrous membrane with PDMS–TMS coating demonstrated protection against water, liquids, and chemicals. The air permeability of cotton fabrics was largely maintained after coating due to the nanoporous structure of the PVA nanofibrous membrane. The nanocomposites with the surface-functionalized nanofibrous surface as protective layers on textiles have a big potential in developing highly versatile protective textiles with well-preserved comfort.
KeywordsNanofibrous membrane Surface functionalization Textiles Protection Comfort
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