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Plasma pre-treatments: new surface properties in textile materials for different applications (coatings, laminates...)

To thoroughly study how innovative surface treatments (low-pressure plasma and corona treatment) improve the coating, laminating and other textile processes.

New coating & laminating technologies are giving solutions to big market demands for what are known as technical textiles, textiles with a wide range of applications in the medical & hygiene fields, clothing, cosmetics, the automotive field, construction, the home, etc. Coating is a process that consists of the continuous application on a textile product (woven or non-woven) of a chemical product in liquid state or a chemical formulation, directly or through transfer, in one or both faces, in order to obtain a fabric with very specific and functional properties, totally different to the conventional finishing methods which only cover the threads and not the interspaces between them. On the other hand, laminating consists of the union of 2 substrates, which can be done using two textile substrates or using a textile and a polymeric film, membrane, etc. through the usage of adhesives, heat or pressure. These new emerging technologies cannot be perceived without Hot-Melt adhesives, which are responsible for at least half of the laminating success. Hot-Melt products depend on the working temperature and its chemical basis. For this reason, the partnership between a manufacturing enterprise and a Textile Research Centre has huge importance in this project for researching and optimising the most suitable adhesives in order to achieve the expected performance in all of the laminated products. The preparation and modification of surfaces has been gaining great interest in several industrial sectors lately. Plasma treatments (corona and low pressure) are able to substantially modify the surface of many different kinds of textile materials (woven, non- woven, etc.). This modification on the surface properties of different substrates does not alter its intrinsic properties. This treatment offers the possibility of opening new vistas for solving production problems, developing new applications or improving textile processes (e.g. increasing hydrophilicity of the fabric in dyeing, printing, flocking, finishing (flame-retardant, stain-less, etc)). The application of plasma technology is an alternative for the textile ennoblement, which could modify the surface of the textile materials at microscopic level to improve the adhesion, hydrophilicity, hydrophobicity, etc. This project aims to thoroughly study the effect of plasma treatments (corona and low pressure) on different textile materials in order to improve several textile processes for different applications: coating, laminating, dyeing, finishing, printing, etc. and compare properties and techniques in order to develop higher quality products. The procedure will be the following: A. DEFINITION PHASE (6 MONTHS). 0. Partner definition. INNOVATEXT is defining its research together with a Hungarian textile company depending on the textile application of interest to the company. 1. Preliminary Study. - Study of the different kinds of surface treatments. - Low-pressure plasma and Corona treatments. - Study of the different laminating, coating, dyeing, printing, etc. technologies and the different kinds of chemical products implied (adhesives, dyestuffs, finishing products, etc.). - Study of the properties expected after the surface treatment: binding, dyeing affinity, etc. 2. Raw Materials Selection. Selection of the substrates and chemical products (adhesives, dyestuffs, etc.). B. IMPLEMENTATION PHASE (24 MONTHS) 3. Experimental study A. - Low-pressure plasma treatment on substrates. - Laminating these substrates. - Corona treatment on substrates. - Laminating these substrates. - Comparison of different kinds of laminates (Measuring strength and peel-off). - Comparison of different kinds of adhesives (Measuring strength and peel-off). - Degradation of the samples and re-measurement of the adhesion and peel-off strength. - Experimental results. 4. Experimental study B. Similar to phase 3 but replacing laminating by coating. 5. Experimental study C. Similar to phase 3 but replacing laminating by the process specified by the Hungarian company. Measuring and comparing the before/after properties (e.g. dyeing affinity, finishing properties, durability of the properties, etc.). 6. Selection of optimal variables for developing the pilot phase in both enterprises. 7. Pilot Test A. - Adjustments required in the processes. - Comparison between laminates and measurements of their adhesion and peel-off strength. - Degradation of the samples and re-measurement of the adhesion and peel-off strength. 8. Pilot Test B. Similar to phase 7 but replacing laminating by coating. 9. Pilot Test C. Similar to phase 7 but using the Hungarian company process. 10. Technical and economic viability of the industrial treatment. 11. Dissemination and exploitation of results. Keywords: plasma, textiles, laminates, coating. 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Acronym: 
PLASMAPRETEX
Project ID: 
3 793
Start date: 
01-03-2006
Project Duration: 
30months
Project costs: 
750 000.00€
Technological Area: 
Surface treatment (painting, galvano, polishing, CVD, PVD)
Market Area: 
Textiles (synthetic and natural)

Raising the productivity and competitiveness of European businesses through technology. Boosting national economies on the international market, and strengthening the basis for sustainable prosperity and employment.