SBIR Phase I: A SUSTAINABLE LAUNDRY SOLUTION: ORGANOSILANE BASED FABRIC CONDITIONERS FOR REDUCING THE ENVIRONMENTAL FOOTPRINT AND ENERGY COMSUMPTION IN LAUNDRY SYSTEMS
National Science Foundation
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Small Business Information
1037 Bret Cove Ct, San Jose, CA, 95120
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractThis Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project aims to develop a novel rinse additive product formulation for use in commercial and home fabric care systems. The silicate-based product formulation will repel water and dirt, decrease energy used in washing machines, decrease detergent usage, and speed up drying time. The rinse additive can be incorporated in the normal fabric care process to retain the look and feel of the garment while enhancing the overall appearance and visual appeal of the garments to make fabrics truly "wash and wear" capable. Normally, fabric care processes are characterized by significant environmental footprint due to use of water, harmful chemicals, and energy associated with laundry. The ability to make fabrics less susceptible to getting dirty would reduce the use of water and detergent along with energy savings associated with washing and drying of garments. At present, there is no other product in the market that can provide these benefits in the form of a fabric conditioner and the success of this project would lead to development of a new technology for energy efficient laundry process for commercial as well as in-home use. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project will be significant from several perspectives. The success of this technology will provide a new fabric conditioner system that can be easily integrated into laundry processes to provide a cost-effective, value-added product. The use of these products in fabric care is also expected to a) save water usage due to self-cleaning properties, b) save energy due to lesser drying time for fabrics, c) reduce the generation of harmful ingredients associated with dry cleaning since the treated fabrics become self-cleaning, and d) reduce the use of chemicals associated with routine laundry, washing, drying, ironing, and water proofing via harmful treatments. The reduced washing and laundering needs of the fabrics are expected to lead to reduction of contaminated grey water, reduced proliferation of chemicals in the environment, and increased energy savings due to less water and energy consumption. Finally, the active components in our formulations degrade to environmentally benign compounds for minimum impact on the environment during their life-cycle.
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