Textile & Fashion

Green process for sizing yarn cuts down water use and pollution

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Good news for both the textile industry and the environment as the researchers of the University of Calicut has found the cleanest and safest way of sizing polyester and cotton yarn without using water. Textile industry is one of the biggest users of water and pollution-causing industries in India. Cutting down various chemicals and using the revolutionizing method designed by the researchers of the aforementioned university will save water and reduce water pollution to a minimum.

Dr. Poovathinthodiyil Raveendran, Department of Chemistry, University of Calicut, led the team of avid researchers and formulated the use of supercritical carbon dioxide (CO2) replacing water and sucrose octa-acetate replacing starch for sizing and/or de-sizing yarns. It has made the process more eco-friendly. The result of the study has been published in the journal named ACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering.

Before yarn is converted into fabric, water and starch were used to strengthen it. It is a smoothening process that reduced the amount of microfiber projecting from the yarn so that there is less interference during weaving. The entire process has been revolutionized using liquid CO2. The researchers tested the process for a considerable amount of time. They also tested three different agents in this purpose and found that sucrose octa-acetate is the ideal one. No drying is needed in this case so the degree of water pollution will reduce to a huge extent. The sizing agent is also easily removable by using conventional de-sizing methods. It is a zero waste and zero pollution method that will further checked after establishing a dedicated pilot plant.

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