Fabrication of Furan based Self-healing elastomer fabrics by Electrospinning and Coating process

S.H. Kim, K.W. Oh
Hanyang University,

Keywords: self-healing, furan based polymer, Diels-Alder reaction, electrospinning, coating process, non-porous vapor permeability, water-proof property


The request of the moisture-permeable and water-proof fabrics such as commercialized water-repellent textiles, polyurethane coated fabric increased with sportswear market which has various complex functionalities. However, these commercialized membrane products have a major weakness that is the loss of performance over time. Therefore, research on self-healing polymers has attracted numerous attentions recently, because it can improve the durability and safety of materials. In this study, a bio-based self-healing elastomer from furan based polymer was synthesized and blended with bio-based polyurethane (BPU) for improved mechanical properties. These elastomers were treated on the Polylactide fabric by electrospinning and coating processes. Furan based polymer was synthesized from 2, 5-furandicarboxylic acid and butane diol via condensation polymerization. It was reacted with bismaleimide by Diels-Alder reaction and blended with BPU. Polyethylene glycol (PEG) was also blended to gain non-porous type water-proof and vapor-permeable properties for the coated fabrics. To investigate the self-healing ability of fabrics, sample was scratched and the healing ability was observed by the optical microscope. The morphology, moisture-permeability, water-proof properties and biodegradability of the fabricated self-healing membrane were analyzed. Synthesized furan based self-healing elastomer was identified by the Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy spectra of blended elastomers. The carbonyl group peak and imide group peak show interaction between the furan based polymer and BPU. The ether peak of PEG shows these polymers have hydrophilic functional groups. This result shows evidence for non-porous type water-proof and vapor-permeable properties. Self-healing ability appears at specific condition of furan based elastomer ratio and healing environment (3 days, 50oC). Morphology, water-repellent property, moisture-permeability and water-proof properties of membrane show enough evidence for its use as a poly functional material. Biodegradability of membrane was maintained when it was compared to elastomer film. Results of this research suggest that a furan based elastomer is a unique self-healing material and its fabricated membrane have enough potential and competitiveness in sportswear market as a substitute of the commercialized water-repellent textiles or polyurethane coated fabrics. This research was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation (NRF) of Korea funded by the Ministry of Science, ICT & Future Planning (NRF-2014R1A1A3049867).