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- story by MaterialDistrict

The Bio-AmiCoFitex coating provides a biobased anti-bacterial and anti-fungal protection for textile, complying with the criteria of the new biocide regulation that urges textile manufacturers to apply non-hazardous alternative biocides.

Because microorganisms have the undesired effect of creating unpleasant smells, transmitting infectants and provoking material degradation, biocides have to be added to those textiles that are subject to the growth of microorganisms. However, this has to be done in a delicate balance, in respect of human and environmental safety while being effective against bacteria, algae and fungi. Biocidal products often contain substances of very high concern and have allergic, carcinogenic, neurotoxic or endocrine disruptive effects.

The Bio-AmiCoFitex coating is based on the application of natural resources. Antimicrobial coatings can be applied in sportswear, carpets, socks, bedding and upholstery, table linen, outdoor textiles, and other application areas.

There are various coatings available. Some examples are:

  • A mixture of biobased antibacterial compounds that are used in cosmetics as preservatives and have an antibacterial effect against Gram+ (e.g. Staphylococcus aureus) and Gram- bacteria (e.g. Escherichia coli).
  • Tannic acid exhibits antibacterial effect against Gram+ bacteria (e.g. Staphylococcus aureus). Commercial tannic acid is usually extracted from Chinese gallnuts, alepo nuts, sumac leaves and tara pods. Tannic acid has strong anti-oxidizing properties and antibacterial
  • Monolaurin exhibiting antibacterial effect against Gram+ bacteria (e.g. Staphylococcus aureus). Monolaurin (also known as glycerol monolaurate) is found in coconut oil and is used as surfactant in cosmetics but also as a dietary supplement to support digestive and immune system.

The biobased antimicrobials were applied by padding. During padding (also called foulard) a textile is impregnated with functional additives and a binder via immersion in a solution (often water-based). The solution contains a specific concentration of additives and binder. The concentration of these products depends of the desired effect and the wet pick-up of the textile. After the textile is immersed in the solution, the textile is squeezed between two rolls to remove the excess of solution.

The research was performed in the framework of Cornet and funded by Flanders Innovation and Entrepreneurship (IWT-10386).

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