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ARS Home » Southeast Area » New Orleans, Louisiana » Southern Regional Research Center » Cotton Fiber Bioscience and Utilization Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #388179

Research Project: Innovative Approaches for Value Added Cotton-Containing Nonwovens

Location: Cotton Fiber Bioscience and Utilization Research

Title: Barrier and mechanical properties of water based polyurethane-coated hydroentangled cotton nonwovens

item SIKDAR, PARTHA - University Of Georgia
item ISLAM, SHAFIQUL - University Of Georgia
item DHAR, AVIK - University Of Georgia
item BHAT, GAJANAN - University Of Georgia
item Hinchliffe, Doug
item Condon, Brian

Submitted to: Journal of Coatings Technology and Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/30/2021
Publication Date: 4/4/2022
Citation: Sikdar, P., Islam, S., Dhar, A., Bhat, G., Hinchliffe, D., Condon, B. 2022. Barrier and mechanical properties of water based polyurethane-coated hydroentangled cotton nonwovens. Journal of Coatings Technology and Research.

Interpretive Summary: The use of unprocessed greige cotton as a raw material in nonwovens textiles is becoming more widespread in response to consumer demand for sustainable and biodegradable products. Nonwovens encompass a wide variety of specialty textiles that find use in hygiene products, disposable wipes, and medical applications. Unique end use applications require physical characteristics and surface properties suited for the task at hand. In some instances, this requires modification of the nonwoven fabrics by chemical or coating processes. This study examined the effects of polyurethane (PU) coating of hydroentangled cotton nonwoven fabrics. The results suggested that minimal PU coating of cotton based nonwoven fabrics imparted improved elasticity and hydrophobic moisture barrier properties while still allowing air to pass through the fabrics. These improved fabrics properties have potential benefits for hygiene applications that require elastic fabrics to move moisture away from contact with skin while maintaining air permeability for comfort.

Technical Abstract: Imparting new functionalities by means of coating on textiles is a step to widen the span of their characteristics and potential applications in different dimensions. In this research, the effects of waterbased polyurethanes (PU) coating on hydroentangled cotton nonwovens were investigated. The coated and uncoated nonwovens produced by various combinations were evaluated for their structure and physical properties such as fiber structure, tensile strength, water contact angle and absorbency. The changes in surface structure of nonwovens after coating were analyzed through scanning electron microscope. Also, stretchability and stretch recovery of the webs showed improvement as determined by cyclic loading and unloading tests. Cotton nonwovens show poor recovery due to the nature of the fiber and the web structure with very low stored energy. The results also show that integration of PU on cotton nonwovens can be a promising approach to develop elasticity to cotton webs with endowed tensile strength and resulted in a vast increase in recovery characteristics.