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First Self-Cleaning Cloth Is Scientific Breakthrough

November 22, 2005

CHINA: Did you hear the latest non-detergent cleaning system to come out of Asia? This one’s a doozy! Scientists at Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) are developing a new fabric that they insist has the ability to clean itself when exposed to sunlight. The new cloth is still at the pioneering stage but has already attracted the attention of manufacturers, the scientists said. The two scientists, Dr. Walid A. Daoud and Dr. John Xin, discovered that a titanium coating applied to fabric could, when exposed to sunlight, remove dirt, pollutants and microorganisms without the need for extra processes, such as wet laundering.
Theoretically, soiled clothing can be put out on a sunny day and removed in a clean state without the need for soap. In order to be effective, clothing would need to be coated with the titanium dioxide. Backed by three years of research, the technology still has some way to go before commercial applications will be available, but Hong Kong’s garment manufacturers are already expressing an interest in using the finished technology in the future, the scientists said.

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