Submitted to: National Cotton Council Beltwide Cotton Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: March 1, 2008
Publication Date: April 15, 2008
Citation: Kamath, M., Bhat, G., Parikh, D.V., Condon, B.D. 2008. Cost Effective Approaches to Impart Flame Resistance to Cotton Nonwovens. National Cotton Council Beltwide Cotton Conference. CDROM. 1838-1842. Technical Abstract: Recent changes in the flammability laws require improvements in the flame resistance of cotton-containing consumer goods such as upholstered furniture, mattresses, and pillows. Cotton, synthetic fibers, fabrics, and foam are the basic constituents of these goods, often the first to engulf by a fire. Hence there is a need to impart certain degree of flame resistance based on their end use. In case of real fires, these improvements in flame resistance would provide more time for people to escape a fire with less fire injuries and save life as well as property. Depending upon the applications the fire-safety standards are separately drafted. To achieve higher degree of flame resistance it is necessary to incorporate additional chemicals into cotton nonwovens that lead to a spike in the product cost. These chemicals play a synergistic role in the combustion process to slow down burning, reduce flame spread, or even extinguish the fire. Moreover there are laws forbidding the use of some flame-retardant chemicals that are suspected environmental and health hazards. The experiments carried out at the University of Tennessee to impart flame resistance to cotton nonwovens considering both the cost of the chemicals, cost of the treatment and the flammability test response are presented here.