Thesis Details

Thesis Title: Durable, High Surface Conductivity, Antistatic Finishes
Thesis Author: Samuel Watson
Abstract: The accumulation of charge on textile materials can provide problems in manufacturing. Static electricity also is an inconvenience to the customer as both mild shocks and the clinging of clothing is not desired. Antistatic agents are often applied to polyester fabrics to reduce these effects by providing mobility of ions on the surface. Typically, excess chemicals are applied to help improve the durability. In this research, sulfonic esters and phosphate esters are covalently bonded to poly(acrylic acid) and applied to the surface of polyester fabrics to increase the durability. Sodium hydroxide is used to neutralize the acids for the mobility of ions. The sulfonic ester taurine was not found to provide any additional antistatic properties to the combination of poly(acrylic acid) and sodium hydroxide, however, o-phosphorylethanolamine did provide additional antistatic properties. Poly(ethylene glycol) was added to the combination of poly(acrylic acid), o-phosphorylethanolamine, and sodium hydroxide but was not found to provide any synergistic antistatic properties. Through use of poly(acrylic acid), o-phosphorylethanolamine, and sodium hydroxide, a pad/dry/cure application method was developed to obtain surface resistivity values of 9.5 Log Ohms/Square at 45 % relative humidity on polyester fabric with approximately one percent add on levels. The resistivity increased by less than a half an order of magnitude after three deionized water rinses. However, the resistivity increased by almost 3.5 orders of magnitude after one accelerated laundering equivalent to five home launderings. The finish was not completely durable to an accelerated laundering, but the antistatic properties are still an improvement over untreated polyester fabric before and after subjection to the same accelerated laundering cycle. The use of poly(acrylic acid) and sodium hydroxide in conjunction with o-phosphorylethanolamine increased the antistatic properties over that of the phosphate ester o-phosphorylethanolamine. The durability was also improved.