TEXTILES

FORMULATIONS & ADDITIVES

Graphene in textiles: shaping a sustainable future

As a transformative material, graphene significantly amplifies the sustainability potential within the textile industry. Its impressive thermal and electrical conductivity, strength, and lightness open pathways to developing textiles that are not only durable but also energy efficient. Graphene-infused fabrics present a paradigm shift, reducing raw material usage and prolonging garment lifespan, leading to less waste. Additionally, these textiles exhibit superior thermal regulation, decreasing the energy needed for temperature management in clothing. Furthermore, graphene’s antimicrobial properties lessen the necessity for harsh chemical treatments, fostering a healthier ecosystem. With such a profound impact, graphene is becoming a cornerstone in steering the textile industry toward a more sustainable future by contributing to the creation of smarter, longer-lasting and environmentally friendly fabrics. Harnessing the potential of graphene provides an unprecedented opportunity to redefine the balance between industrial progress and environmental responsibility.

OUR PRODUCTS FOR TEXTILE INDUSTRY

INKGUP® Fabric is a graphene-based coating formulation for textiles produced with few-layer graphene GUP®, designed to provide enhanced physical properties and excellent thermal regulation. INKGUP® Fabric is an ideal coating formulation with antistatic properties, antibacterial and antiviral, high abrasion resistance, and excellent thermal dispersion properties. INKGUP® Fabric is a water-based product, certified ECO PASSPORT by OEKO-TEX®. It is heavy-free, APEO-free, PVC, formaldehyde, and phthalate-free and complies with all the most restrictive ecological regulations in the textile market.

INKGUP® Fabric crosslinks at temperatures above 130°C, but 140°C is required for optimum durability. The product should be stirred well before use. The product can be applied with standard direct coating processes like knife-over-roll coating.

PRINTGUP® is a graphene-based screen printing ink for textiles produced with few-layer graphene GUP®, designed to provide superior thermal regulation. Suitable for cotton, jersey, lycra, and other natural and synthetic fabrics. PRINTGUP® has an extremely stable shape with exceptionally high moisture transport properties and excellent drying action. Graphene coating allows rapid heat dispersion, wicking away sweat and effective air circulation, and there is no sensation of wetness. PRINTGUP® is a water-based product, certified ECO PASSPORT by OEKO-TEX®. It is heavy metal free, APEO free, PVC, formaldehyde, and phthalate free and complies with all the most restrictive ecological regulations in the textile market.

Ready to use, it can be diluted with a thinner (maximum percentage of 5%) for better stability on the screen. PRINTGUP® crosslinks at temperatures above 130°C for at least 4 minutes, but 140 °C is required for optimum durability. Use polyester or stainless steel screens up to 90T gauge mesh.

GUP® C-Paste is a graphene-based screen printing conductive ink for textiles produced with few-layer grapheneGUP®, designed to provide superior electrical and thermal conductive properties.

Use polyester or stainless steel screens up to 77T gauge mesh. GUP® C-Paste has to be cured at temperatures above 130°C for at least 3 minutes.

Main Advantages of GUP® for Textile Industry

Strenght & Flexibility

graphene greatly enhances textile durability. Its flexibility also ensures it doesn’t compromise the cloth’s softness or comfort

Antibacterial

exhibits potent antibacterial capabilities. Its integration into textiles can help prevent infections, making it particularly useful for medical textiles and everyday wear

Smart Textiles

the conductive nature of graphene allows seamless integration of sensors and electronic components into clothing, making it an ideal material for the growing wearable technology market

 

Thermal Regulation

graphene keeps the basal body temperature stable, with no strong thermal fluctuations detected in the event of changes to the surrounding temperature

Antistatic / ESD

once introduced graphene, the textile has low resistivity and find applications in workwear, heating devices and EMI shielding textiles

 

 

Sustainability

the textile sector is responsible for 10% of global carbon emissions. Graphene enables the production of highly durable textiles, thereby reducing waste and the demand for new production and limits also the water consumption due to the reduced washing frequency

Durability

GUP® formulations for textile coatings have been tested (UNI EN ISO 12947-1/2) and proved to have high abrasion resistance on several kind of fabrics.

Odor Neutralizing

binds and neutralizes various molecules, including those responsible for unpleasant smells. It can effectively trap and neutralize odor-causing bacteria and compounds, which results in a fabric that stays fresher for longer

UV Protection

graphene has the advantages of high refractive index, strong UV shielding ability and photocatalytic effect

No Sweat

distributes the body heat more evenly across the garment, reducing hotspots that typically lead to sweating. The introduction of graphene provides substantial improvements in wearer comfort by mitigating sweat production

Wherever they are used,
graphene-based smart textiles
provide added value in terms
of improved performance
and comfort.

Graphene is thermally efficient when applied as a coating or integrated into yarns, reducing body temperature by more than 4 °C, achieving a high range of UV protection, and preventing harmful dermatological diseases.
Graphene can also be used to enhance the performance of other textiles, such as household curtains or outdoor tents and shelters, to insulate homes and reduce UV exposure when outdoors, to create antistatic carpets, and for smart textiles.

Graphene application can improve the technical properties of traditional fabrics without changing their natural structure.

A graphene coating that offers superior thermoregulation of your body for maximum performance

Graphene-based electrically conductive coatings can also be used as electric heaters.
Due to their ohmic resistance, electrically conductive coatings can develop heat by the flow of electric current. The heat can be regulated by adjusting the voltage value.
This heating method is most often used in medical clothing intended for patients, but also in sportswear for monitoring athletes’ fitness and physical condition during training.

Apart from mechanical influences, heat plays a significant role in changes in the electrical resistance of conductive coatings. In addition to external heat sources, electrically conductive coatings are also affected by the heat generated by the flow of electric current through them. The increase in temperature in the conductive coatings, whether from an external source or due to the flow of electric current, results in a linear increase in the resistance of the conductive coating.

Graphene has very great potential to respond to many issues related to thermal risks.

Thermal stress is among the most common physical hazards in various work sectors.
Indeed, exposure to extreme temperatures can lead the worker to heat stress, which occurs when the body cannot maintain its temperature between 36 and 37 °C. Heat syncope, heat exhaustion, heat stroke, dehydration, heat cramps, hyponatremia, and rhabdomyolysis are among the diseases or health disorders due to heat exposure. Hypothermia, immersion feet, and frostbite are the most significant injuries and illnesses caused by exposure to extreme cold.
Therefore, the prevention of thermal stress risks should be a priority to avoid any adverse effects on workers’ health and safety. Adequate prevention of heat stress risks not only provides a sense of comfort for the worker toward his work environment but can also have a positive impact on the productivity rate and decrease the employer’s number of injuries.
The materials used in designing several types of PPE tend to avoid the adequate dissipation of body heat. It is essential to develop new tools and equipment to ensure thermal risk management adapted to the individual situation of the worker and their work environment. In such a context, graphene-based innovative textile technologies integrated into personal protective equipment have a great potential to respond to many issues related to thermal risks.

Thermal Regulation

Graphene, with excellent thermal dispersion, can provide extra thermal regulation.

There is a big challenge in protecting humans from extreme environmental conditions, as under extreme environmental conditions, the tradition thermal protective clothing is far from enough to ensure the safety and wellbeing of humans. Thus, it is important to develop new thermal insulating materials with outstanding thermal insulation performance to withstand thermal conduction and thermal radiation.

Heat is generally transferred via thermal conduction, thermal radiation, and thermal convection. The clothing system serves as the barrier between the environment and the human body, in which the fibrous materials and fibrous structure dominate the heat transfer from body to the environment. Graphene is an extremely effective heat conductor material with excellent absorption and emission of far infrared radiation, with high absorption for wavelengths 100-281 nm and high reflection over 281 nm, and provides heating and cooling through heat dissipation. Graphene can keep the basal body temperature stable, with no strong thermal fluctuations detected during changes to the surrounding temperature or physical exertion.

Antibacterial and Antiviral Properties

Our formulations have been certified as antiviral and antibacterial.

Graphene GUP ® destroys the bacterial cell membrane with a reduction rate of over 96%, according to ASTM E 2149. The antibacterial function of a given finish on a textile may be used to identify three different finishing techniques. Control release, regeneration, and barrier block are examples of these systems. There are issues with the first two mechanisms of ending an antimicrobial agent from fabric that comes into touch with the wearer’s skin concerning the control release mechanism’s longevity after laundry. These substances can irritate and cause allergies in people with healthy skin. After washing, the antibacterial characteristics of fabrics treated with a regenerate mechanism are no longer activated, leading to these issues. Chlorine bleach is not only harmful to cotton, but it is also bad for your skin.

In contrast to the other two ways, barrier blocking with graphene does not have drawbacks. To destroy germs that come into touch with the fabric, graphene is attached to the fabric surface and does not leach. Graphene can also be a supporting platform for metal nanoparticles with a synergistic effect. INKGUP Fabric has excellent antibacterial properties and UV protection and has been certified antiviral with “excellent effect” with the viral strain SARS CoV 2 ISO 18184 2019

UV Protection

GUP® used in finishing treatments gives excellent anti-UV protection

In recent years, with the rapid development of industry, the ozone layer in the atmosphere has been seriously damaged. Without the ozone layer protection, people are more exposed to ultraviolet radiation. Therefore, anti-ultraviolet radiation is becoming increasingly important.
Textile clothing is the most effective tool to protect the human body, so it is necessary to carry out anti-ultraviolet finishing on textiles. Some fabrics naturally have a certain anti-UV effect, such as wool, silk, polyester, etc. Due to the benzene ring, aromatic amino acids, and other functional groups in their molecular structure, they have good absorption of ultraviolet light below 300 nm. However, the structure of cotton fiber does not contain a benzene ring, and the longitudinal distortion is not smooth, so the ultraviolet rays easily pass through the cotton fabric. Therefore, the anti-ultraviolet finishing of cotton fabric is essential. Graphene GUP®, an aromatic hydrocarbon molecule composed of an (infinite sheet of fused benzene rings (or sp carbon atoms bonded in fused hexagons), has the advantages of high refractive index, strong UV shielding ability, and photocatalytic effect. Therefore, if combined with cotton fabric, it can improve the anti-UV performance of the fabric and protect people from ultraviolet radiation.

Abrasion Resistance and Durability

GUP® formulations enable a longer lifetime for textiles

The increasing production of protective equipment that requires increased security for work in harsh operating conditions has led to the need for fabrics with high resistance to wear. Protective clothing for workers, soldiers, police officers, firefighters, and others is exposed to daily wear and in specific areas, so it must be highly resistant to abrasion. Wear is only one factor that influences the shabbiness and durability of the fabric. This abrasion resistance is essential because wearing clothes enables a longer lifetime. It is similar to surface products for bedding, furniture, and technical purposes. GUP® formulations for textile coatings have been tested (UNI EN ISO 12947-2) and proved to have high abrasion resistance on several kinds of fabrics.

EMI Shielding and Electrical Conductivity

GUP® used in finishing treatments for highly demanding smart textiles

Electrically conductive textiles make it possible to produce interactive electronic textiles. They can be used for communication, entertainment, health care, safety, homeland security, computation, thermal purposes, protective clothing, wearable electronics, and fashion. Conductive textiles that change their electrical properties due to a physical variable can be considered a sensor. Textile sensors can be designed to measure temperature, biopotential ( myographs, encephalographs), acoustic ( lungs, digestion, joints), ultrasound (blood flow), biological, chemical, motion pressure, radiation (spectroscopy), odor sweat, mechanical skin parameters, and electric skin parameters INKGUP® Fabric and GUP® C-Paste help to have coatings with very low resistivity and find applications in intelligent wear, workwear, heating devices and EMI shielding textiles.

Martindale Test

UNI EN ISO 12947-1/2

After 38418 cycles, the jeans is completely destroyed; after 65000 cycles, the jeans coated with INKGUP® Fabric has just one broken yarn.

The wear resistance of textiles is important for clothing, furniture, as for technical textiles. Wear or abrasion might initially only influence the appearance, but eventually might lead to the destruction of the textile product. Especially for fabrics woven or knitted from staple fiber yarns, the pilling behavior is a problem. In the case of wool fabrics, a rubbing strain will yield a certain felting of the product. The three-dimensional structure of the fabrics might exhibit a displacement and/or pull-out of fibers or complete fiber bundles.

Several tests performed on different kinds of textiles showed how INKGUP® Fabric significantly improves the abrasion resistance lowering the frictional resistance.

Main Applications

Smart Textiles

Sportwear

Medical & Healtcare

Underwear

Footwear

Workwear

Automotive

Face Masks

Heated Clothes

Heated Car Seats

Heated Pads

Military

Main Benefits of GUP®-Based Waterborne Formulations for Textile Industry

Eco-Friendly Technology

Our aqueous formulations and additives are free from harmful, toxic chemicals, making them safer for the environment and operators. No VOC’s evaporate into the air, allowing operators to work in a clean space.

Customer Oriented

We develop customer-oriented formulations that provide functional performance and we offer water-based formulations for tailor-made solutions. Tuned to specific and functional applications requirements.

Quality Cost Control

Aqueous formulations use a carrier composed of water and organic co-solvents. Do not contain dyes and do not require any pre-treatment.

 

High Performance

Our water-based additives and formulations deliver high-quality coatings on several types of textiles and fabrics.

 

 

Unique Technology

GUP®-based additives and formulations are designed using highly innovative concepts. Thanks to our dispersion know-how, we provide products without graphene agglomeration and with high stability.

SEM images of the coating on a cotton fabric with INKGUP® Fabric