Textiles treated with silicone chemicals showcases adaptability towards changing environment
There is a growing demand for the manufacturing of the clothing which gives protection from temperature change, radiation, wind chill and UV light. The high performance apparels are designed to give protection and covering from several energy effects. The intelligent fabric is composed of the 3D spacer textile and a further process with silicon coatings is an active protection system (APS). The technological advancement helped in creating textile with improved protection and comfort to humans even in a hostile environment.
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The textiles are not only limited to apparel clothing but advanced textiles help in improving quality of life.The protective textile is used in sports, defense, radiation protection and fire protection. The textile is engineered by using silicon composites having polymers and forming transient bonds with a cross linking component.
The textile with silicone coating is highly versatile giving full flexibility, comfort and lightweight construction. The textile can be woven, non-woven or knitted and it is easy to wash and maintain. It is highly used in defense field for providing thermo-physical comfort in extreme conditions. The hydrophilic and hydrophobic component of the smart fabric helps in regulating the temperature and making it breathable and comfortable.
Nowadays, people are more inclined toward the textile that have good softness feel and regulates the temperature according to the environment. In sports, the clothing is preferred with breathability, good elasticity and comfort which is helping the market to grow.
Silicone chemicals provide bacteriostatic properties
The chemical finishing agent is utilized in reducing the microbial activity on the fibres and fabric. Woven, knitted, yarns, blankets and coats have more chances of microbial growth as they are used for longer period by providing good medium for the growth and multiplication of the microbes, which results in reducing the fabric strength, gives unpleasant smell and also affect the health of the wearer. The textile with silicone finishing gives protective covering for the biological attack from the atmosphere.
The anti-bacterial property is given by synthesizing organosilicon modifiers and treated with oligomers at room temperature. This type of apparels is majorly used in laboratories and medical fields where the contamination is higher. People prefer clothes with bacteriostatic properties as the growth is reduced when treated with certain silicone chemicals.
The anti-bacterial and anti-microbial finishing plays a major role in the field of medical laboratories, medical textile and defense. Different type of silicon softeners and other silicone textile chemical are available in the market which gives anti-bacterial finishing.
The demand for textile treated with silicone chemical has increased over years in the medical field. As textile fabric are engineered with anti-microbial properties to keep up with the medical and surgical application for maintaining hygiene. The innovations in the textile field have been able to create barrier between the wearer and environment which helps in reducing microbial growth.It will control the infestation by microbes which is major problem faced by the hospitals and laboratories
The modern textiles are produced with functional formulation. Also, the products provide enhanced hydrophilicity which reduces the microbial and fungal growth. The silicone textile chemicals market is boosting due to the increase in number of hospital and significant demand of fabrics in hospitals and clinics which is driving the silicone textile market globally.
Usage of silicone chemical products is harmful for the biodiversity
The textile finishers have certain disadvantages which can act as a restrain for the global market. Although the silicone chemicals provides benefits such as shear strength, flexibility, softness, ant-static property, elasticity, hydrophilic property and durability but they can affect the biodiversity if not disposed properly.
The chemicals are washed off into waterbodies which are toxic for the aquatic life as well as the terrestrial organisms. The impact of the coatings is not only limited to the aquatic organism but it reaches to human. This will result into bio-magnification and lead to environment imbalance.
There is no check on proper disposal of the chemicals used in the textile industries by Government bodies; it is directly poured into waterbodies making drinking water toxic and changes the pH level; leading to the growth of certain flora and fauna which is dangerous for the environment. The nature of silicone chemicals is acidic that disturbs the fertility of the soil and make it unfertile. The silicone textile chemical can enter skin or through inhalation which is causing bronchial disease and even cancer.
The Government of various countries has taken steps in the past to reduce the on-going effects of the chemical textile. Dyes which are formulated by amines are banned for being carcinogenic in most of the countries. So there is the possibility that the government might come up with certain regulations that restrain the growth of silicone textile market.
Investment in nanotechnology for the creating silicone products in developing countries
The nanotechnology based products are expected to grow in the future which will create an opportunity for the textile industries. Several innovations are done in the field of textile with the help of nanotechnology. It has helped in developing products with improved qualities including anti-static, water resistance, crease resistance and protection from UV & microbial growth. Silicon Micro Emulsion is the softener which provides anti-microbial properties. The Softener Flakes, a China based manufacturer of textile auxiliaries has launched Hydrophilic Copolymer Silicon QS-218 which is excellent water resistant and anti-static chemical used for all kinds of fabrics.
The nanoparticle is driving the textile industries in research & development and commercialising due to its enhanced quality. The nanoparticle coatings give fibre and fabric protective coating that makes it durable, flexible, color strength, UV blocking anti-bacterial and anti-static properties without compromising breath ability. The innovation in the textile industry with nanotechnology has helped in creating smart clothing and Nano-whiskers.
Toxicity of Siloxanes is a major issue for manufacturers
The manufacturing of the textiles chemical product comprises harmful waste leading the environmental pollution and are considered as worst offenders in pollution. The labors are in continuous contact with chemicals which enter into the body through the skin absorption or during the respiratory process and causes allergic reactions. The chemicals used are carcinogenic in nature and causes cancer, mutagenic and nephrotoxic effects.
Siloxanes are an important ingredient for silicone textile chemical but managing its toxicity is very difficult for manufacturers. It is unstable and very persistent, once released in the environment, it remains for many years. They are used to form softeners and surfactant to give desirable characteristics to the fabric. Cationic surfactants are not present in usual cleaning products but added inactive agents in fabric softeners. It exhibits a poor biodegradability connected with a relatively high eco-toxicity in standard tests.
The labors working in the textile industries are in directly contact with the hazardous chemical and long-term exposure effects to their health. The chemical can enter into the bodies through inhalation, skin and accidently which can lead to the bronchial problem, skin disease and optical impairment. The textile chemical used in the industries is mutagenic and cancerous which causes cancers. The safety equipment works only up to certain extent but for longer period, it fails. The manufacturers are facing problem to create a safe and healthy working environment. This is a major threat that the silicone textile chemical industries are dealing which can lead to a decline in the usage of silicone chemical products and affect the global market for silicone textile chemicals.
Some of the major players operating in this market are Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation, Huntsman International LLC, Shin-Etsu Chemical Co., Ltd., Momentive , Wacker Chemie AG and others.
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