Smart materials or textiles can be defined as the materials and structures which have sense or can sense the environmental conditions or stimuli, whereas intelligent textiles can be defined as textile structures which not only can sense but can also react and respond to environmental conditions or stimuli. These stimuli as well as response, could be thermal, chemical, mechanical, electric, magnetic or from other source.
•Gore-tex is a waterproof/breathable fabric that is manufactured from PTFE into a laminated membrane
•Properties: breathable, lightweight, waterproof. When worn gore-tex releases watervapour(sweat) from the body but stops raindrops entering
•It is used in a range of high performance products such as medical implants, filter media, insulation for wires and cables, gaskets, and sealants. However, Gore-Tex is used mostly in outdoor and all weather clothing.
It seems straightforward. You’re in a sustainable state of mind when it comes to fashion, you choose natural fibers over man-made, right?
What could be more of-this-Earth than something made from, say, cotton, a product humans have used for thousands of years?
It’s not that simple.
The nasty truth is that the commercial production of textiles, whether natural or synthetic, requires an immense amount of resources and leaves considerable pollution in its wake.
You thought that simply going with natural fibers made you a true friend of nature. Think again. For the purposes of this discussion, we compare the most widely worn fabric in the world, cotton, versus the poor man’s cotton: polyester.
Cotton absorbs and releases perspiration quickly, giving it breathability. Less absorbent polyester doesn’t make you sweat, but it does keep sweat next to your body, which is why you may have found yourself followed by a less than flowery fragrance when you go man-made.
Cotton also has a softer, suppler feel, making it less likely to irritate the skin. That means it’s a better bet for those with sensitive skin, including children and infants.
From an engineering standpoint, cotton is a beauty, its soft cellulose fibers densely interlocked for strength. But let’s face it, polyester came to market during the Atomic Age. The stuff is built to last forever. The garments fashioned from it may be cheaply made, but the fabric itself is nearly indestructible.
Garments made of both cotton and poly range up and down the price scale, but while synthetics and blends tend to be thought of as less expensive, 100 percent cotton products mass-produced in places such as Burma, Pakistan and the Dominican Republic can be brought to the American market for a very low price and are a staple in popular retail stores like Old Navy and Target.
Polyester dries faster since it’s not particularly absorbent to begin with. It doesn’t require hot water in the wash, because it doesn’t get all that dirty. In fact, over its lifetime, in a well-made garment, it actually may use less energy than cotton..
What are the differences between polyester fleece and cotton fleece fabric?