Boras University fellows create luminescent textiles

Date posted: 30/12/2020


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Boras University photo

During the doctoral thesis research, a researcher at Borås University succeeded in creating luminescent textiles using luminescent phenomena in nature. Her work in textile technology can be useful in a number of fields as luminescent materials have a wide range of applications including biomedical, biosensor, safety, architecture and aesthetics. Researchers have made the first effort and success in creating luminescent textiles by taking advantage of the luminescent phenomenon in nature. "My research has proven that this discovery is possible," says Boras University doctoral thesis researcher Sweta Iyer.

The image of a neon colored fish vividly swimming through the sea, lighting up the water surface was the inspiration for Iyer's doctoral thesis titled "Photoluminescent textiles using biological products - Approach biology ”, which is based on having organisms that live in nature with properties that humans can exploit in many ways. A good example is natural luminescence, which is how invisible cold-emitting objects can be used to make luminescent textiles.

Iyer holds a master's degree in physical chemistry from the University of Mumbai. After that, she worked as a researcher at several textile companies. “This work gave me insight into both the textile process and the processing industry. My field of study motivated me to study for my doctorate. The issue that caught my interest was how new chemicals could be applied in textiles to achieve new functions for fabrics. That is also the focus of my doctoral thesis, ”she said.

Iyer realizes that there is a gap in the field of textile research that needs to be filled. "Natural bioluminescence and their reaction mechanisms have been extensively studied in biology and biochemistry, but not previously applied to textiles". The purpose of the research is to help create luminescent textiles with the help of biological products. "The key issue of research is understanding the mechanism of bioluminescence that exists in different living organisms and the choice of response systems," says Iyer.

Research is carried out using enzyme immobilization methods and ecological technologies such as plasma treatment. And the results were very positive. "Along with the use of conventional dyeing and printing methods, even resource-saving methods such as inkjet and color inkjet printing have been successfully employed."

Light-emitting materials have many different applications, from biomedical, biosensor, safety to architecture and aesthetics. Properties such as anti-ultraviolet and antibacterial properties are also effective.

This research is completely new when it comes to textile applications - but it goes much further than that. Iyer says that this topic has a wide reach and offers new perspectives because textiles are used in almost all fields of research. Three universities - ENSAIT in France, Soochow University in China and Borås University - participated in the study. "This topic has given me a lot of knowledge about research methods at different universities as well as a large scientific network," Iyer said. Learning about different cultures is also an interesting part of the program. I hope my work can contribute to the improvement and development of ecologically efficient bioluminescent fiber fabrics in a variety of fields.

Translator by:Nguyễn Thị Hồng Liên



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