This research investigates applying zinc oxide nanoparticles to polypropylene nonwoven fabrics via electrospinning for the development of UV-protective materials. Layered fabric systems with electrospun zinc oxide nanocomposite fiber webs were developed at various concentrations of zinc oxide in a range of web area densities. The effects of zinc oxide concentration and web area density on the UV-protective properties of layered fabric systems were examined. Air and moisture vapor transport properties of layered fabric systems were assessed to examine the effect of electrospun web layers on thermal comfort properties of the material. A very thin layer of electrospun zinc oxide nanocomposite fibers significantly increased the UV blocking for both UV-A and UV-B ranges, and exhibited an ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) of greater than 40, indicating excellent UV protection. UV-protective properties of layered fabric systems increased with increasing zinc oxide concentrations of the nanocomposite fiber web. Increasing the electrospun web area density of the zinc oxide nanocomposite fiber web also enhanced UV-protective properties of layered fabric systems. Air and moisture vapor transport properties of layered fabric systems decreased as the electrospun web area density increased for the range of web area densities examined.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Chemical Engineering(all)
- Polymers and Plastics