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Title: Application of nanotechnology for multifunctional sportswear fabrics
Author: Pliakas, Achilles
ISNI:       0000 0004 2740 6529
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2011
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Body moisture and heat are factors connected with athlete's comfort, performance and physical condition during and after sporting activities. Up to date approaches on fabric's moisture and heat control involve: i) chemical pre- or post-treatments of the fibres, and/or the fabrics, ii) combination of original properties of fibres, by fibre blending or fabric multi-layering, or iii) increased fabric surface area or 3D structures to remove moisture from the body through the fabric volume, whilst enabling air ventilation. The novelty of the work undertaken was to develop a process which created a light- weight multifunctional textile surface for moisture and heat management that facilitates drying and cooling of athletes' body during high levels of activity. The work involved; i) plasma treatment of a light-weight knitted polypropylene (PP) fabric and the subsequent ii) nanocoating of the plasma treated surface. Both processes are environmental friendly; using minimum amount of chemicals, and with no by- products. Appropriate fabric mechanical and physical properties were obtained by extruding and fabricating the polypropylene (PP) fibres using experimental equipment. Optimum treatment parameters of the process were determined to impart hydrophilicity and hydrophobicity on opposite sides of the fabric while leaving its bulk untouched. The treated surface was evaluated by FTIR and SEM analysis, water contact angle measurements and moisture and heat transfer rates, through its bulk, with a device that was designed and constructed in the lab supported by the theoretical background of the physical processes that. took place during the moisture and heat transfer. In total, the contribution of this work to knowledge, is the design and construction of a Wilhelmy frame for dynamic contact angle measurements on fabric structures, creation of wicking of moisture through fabric structures by contact angle difference on opposite sides, developing of a single layer multifunctional surface using environmentally friendly and low cost methods, and finally the design and construction of a sweat simulator for moisture and heat transfer through fabric structure.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available