Submitted to: American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists Journal of Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/27/2014
Publication Date: 1/10/2015
Citation: Easson, M.W., Wojkowski, S.A., Condon, B.D., Yeater, K.M., Slopek, R.P., Fortier, C.A. 2015. Ultrasound-enhanced bioscouring of greige cotton: regression analysis of process factors. American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists Journal of Research. 2(1):16-23.
Interpretive Summary: For many decades the textile industry has relied upon the use of caustic scouring to remove pectin and other unwanted materials from greige cotton, prior to further dyeing or finishing. The use of alkaline chemicals generates a hazardous waste stream which requires neutralization, costing additional time and money in the process. Research conducted at the Southern Regional Research Center in New Orleans, Louisiana in the Cotton Chemistry and Utilizations group has found that a combination of ultrasound and enzymes offers an effective alternative to conventional caustic treatment. Over the past decade research has focused on documenting the many substrates that can benefit from this innovative technology and much has been written about the nature of the ultrasound/enzyme interaction. However, the present research is focused on understanding the significance of the process factors, their interactions and optimization. For the first time a rigorous statistical treatment of four process factors has been undertaken with the objectives of generating a predictive equation for bioscouring performance, optimizing process factors, and lowering processing costs without significantly reducing performance.
Technical Abstract: Process factors of enzyme concentration, time, power and frequency were investigated for ultrasound-enhanced bioscouring of greige cotton. A fractional factorial experimental design and subsequent regression analysis of the process factors were employed to determine the significance of each factor and possible interactions. An equation was generated which predicted bioscouring performance. The bioscouring conditions of 100% ultrasonic power at 220 kHz for 60 minutes with 31 µL of pectinase enzyme per 100 mL of buffer proved to be greater than 98% as effective at pectin removal compared to conventional sodium hydroxide treatment. Given the issues associated with caustic scouring of greige fabrics, the combination of ultrasound and enzymes in textile processing is an attractive alternative to conventional methods.