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23rd March 2015, USA

Fresher, Safer, Longer-Lasting: Silver-Based Antimicrobials Enter a New Era

Debra Cobb reports from the US


A new generation of silver-based antimicrobial treatments for textiles, utilising unique delivery systems, is poised to usher us into what one might call the era of Odour Control 2.0.


Silver inhibits the growth of odour-causing bacteria on textiles through the release of silver ions (Ag+), which break down the cell walls of microbes and interfere with their normal metabolic processes; but the efficacy, durability, safety, and environmental effects of silver treatments can vary widely. Despite silver’s established history as a safe and natural antimicrobial, many of the current technologies have fallen short.


SILVADUR has also taken a unique marketing approach, choosing to launch the product in applications such as denim. © Debra Cobb


Surprisingly, silver-based technologies had only a 9% share of antimicrobial textile treatments in 2004, growing to 25% in 2011, according to a 2013 study entitled Comparative Evaluation of Antimicrobials for Textile Applications, authored by Windler, Height, and Nowack and published by Elsevier in the online journal Environment International.


The new, non-nano silver-based technologies have been engineered for improved ease of handling and durability, utilising silver salts from recycled silver products, or molecular ionic silver.


Read the full story on our Innovationintextiles.com site


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