The textile industry has been searching for a coating which offers the same water repellency and stain protection performance as perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) technology, yet without the obvious negative attributes (C8 technology is bio-accumulative). It became apparent that a technology based on SiO² (liquid glass) could offer the solution, and this has indeed proven to be the case. In essence, the technolody provided by a German company allows the end user to deposit a nano scale layer of molecular, particle free glass onto the surface of most items. The molecules of glass come from pure quartz sand, of which there are vast reserves, as silicone dioxide is one of the most abundant compounds on the planet.
The offered coating technology, which also utilises an environmentally optimised, slightly cationic, C6-carbonfluoropolymer, is PFOA-free, very hydrophobic and oleophobic, self healing and most importantly machine washable. The techology surpasses the performance of C8 as it provides an oleophobicity rating of 8 (ISO 14419). One of the main challenges is the bonding characteristics of coatings, which needed to be enhanced for better durability. This obstacle was overcome by creating a hybrid matrix, which, when heat cured, provides a coating which supersedes the performance characteristics of standard C8 fabric coating technology.
The company is looking for partners for commercial agreements with technical assistance. The goal is to integrate the technology in the partners' production and apply the coating during the manufacturing process. The German company will test as well as adapt the technology to the partners needs. There are two versions, an industrial application and one DIY variant that can be applied by spraying, sponging or dipping and is ideal for post-production.