Russian scientists create fabric from silk production waste with anti-viral properties

Saint-Petersburg State University of Industrial Technologies and Design

Scientists from the St. Petersburg State University of Industrial Technology and Design (SPbGUPTD) have developed a method for creating a textile material from silk waste, which has bactericidal properties. This was reported to TASS by the press service of the university on June 22.

Natural silk is an extremely valuable type of fabric, it is durable, it absorbs moisture well and allows air to pass through, it is biocompatible and does not cause allergies, it is resistant to the action of microbes, bacteria and fungi, which makes it different from cotton. However, in the production of silk fabrics, about half of the raw materials end up in waste.

“The problem of recycling waste of valuable biopolymers is being dealt with by a scientific group of the St. Petersburg State University of Industrial Technology and Design. The result of the research was the development of a method for obtaining material from non-utilized silk waste,” said the agency’s interlocutor.

To create textiles, fibrous silk waste is treated with a chemical composition, then a uniform canvas is formed from them. This canvas is then sealed on a needle punching machine. The result is a durable, breathable and highly porous material that comes in a variety of thicknesses and areal densities.

Silver and copper nanoparticles are formed in the porous structure of such a material by impregnation with an aqueous solution of salts. Scientists have also learned to control the amount and size of applied nanoparticles using methods of mathematical processing of experimental results with various parameters (concentration of reagents and impregnation conditions).

“Non-woven material made from silk waste has bactericidal properties: all applied fungi, gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria and viruses die on its surface within 24 hours. The material can be used in medicine, in everyday life, to create elements of sportswear and shoes,” they noted in the press service.

(Source: Russian News Agency TASS)

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