Nanotech 2010

Preparation of Electrospun TPU/PCMs Nanofibers as a Thermostatic Clothing Material

K. Choi, D. Branson, A. Osta, K. Sallam
Oklahoma state university, US

Keywords: phase change materials, electrospinning, nanofibers, conductive fabric


Main focus of the present study was to prepare nanofibers containing PCMs with web formation on a fabric directly and to confirm PCMs inside the surface material as sheath-core formation. Eicosane(C20H42), Nonadecane(C19H40), Octadecane(C18H38) as core materials and thermoplastic polyurethane elastomers(TPU) as shell material were chosen. N,N-dimethylformamide was used as solvent. 20x20 cm nylon knitted fabric without conductive yarns and polyester woven fabric with metallic yarns were placed 12 cm below the tip of the needle to collect the nanofiber containing PCMs for 4 hours. Charged TPU polymers dispersed without collecting on the nylon fabric after flying in the air. The polymers gathered around a copper wire after the wire was added to the fabric. The fibers were mainly collected around conductive yarns initially, but they were evenly distributed on the fabric surface. Produced nanofibers had even diameters in a range of 100-150nm and a linear cylindrical shape. TEM image showed that each fiber segment had different contrasts, with a dark inner region, namely the PCM core and a light edge(outer) region, the TPU shell. In future work, thermal efficiency and physical properties of the fibers will be evaluated to explain the thermostatic properties and adaptability as smart clothing material.
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