This new kind of cotton fabric inhales a whole lot of harmful air pollutants

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This new kind of cotton fabric inhales a whole lot of harmful air pollutants
Representative imagePixabay
  • Researchers at Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi (IIT-D) have developed a new modified cotton fabric which can absorb harmful air pollutants.
  • It has the capacity to absorb 400-600% more volatile organic compounds as compared to ordinary cotton fabric.
  • These cotton fabrics can be used in homes, offices, cars, theatres, airplanes as a chair cover for controlling the gaseous pollutants.
A team of researchers at Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi (IIT-D) have developed a new modified cotton fabric ⁠— named as ZIF-8@CM and ZIF-67@CM ⁠— which can absorb harmful air pollutants like benzene, hydrogen chloride that can cause cancer and birth defects.

It has the capacity to absorb 400-600% more volatile organic compounds like carbon oxides, sulphur oxides as compared to ordinary cotton fabric. A person who is exposed to these toxic air pollutants for a longer period can suffer from asthma or eye, throat irritations.

The team was led by Professor Ashwini K. Agrawal, Professor Manjeet Jassal and Professor Saswata Bhattacharya of IIT Delhi.

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These cotton fabrics, which are durable, are modified with Zeolite Imidazolate Framework (ZIF) and can withstand harsh washing conditions. ZIF is a class of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs).

ZIF is more suitable under the weather conditions in India, according to Hardeep Singh, a research scholar who conducted detailed experiments to develop these fabrics.

Professor Agrawal said in the press release,“In this study, we have shown the functionalisation of cotton fabric by ZIF MOFs (ZIF-8 and ZIF-67) using a rapid, facile, eco-friendly, and scalable approach. The ZIF functionalised textiles possess a huge potential for applications as protective garments and in controlling indoor air pollution.”

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He further said that these cotton fabrics can be used in homes, offices, cars, theatres, airplanes as a chair cover for controlling the gaseous pollutants, which are not easy to filter out.

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