Indian Journal of Fibre & Textile Research
Vol. 31, March 2006, pp. 83-98


Atmospheric pressure glow discharge plasma and its applications in textile


Kartick Samanta, Manjeet Jassal & Ashwini K Agrawal


Plasma, a partially-ionized gas generated by an electrical discharge or high temperature, is of different types and can be classified based on pressure, temperature, source of energy and type of gases. Cold plasma is generated by electric discharge at near-ambient temperatures and can be used for surface modification of textile substrates. This paper reports a brief review of the various plasma and their applications for textile modifications. For textile modifications, atmospheric pressure glow discharge cold plasma is more suitable because it can be designed for continuous treatment of textile. However, the main challenge in atmospheric plasma is to obtain a stable glow (filament-free) discharge over a large surface area suitable for the safe treatment of textile. At IIT-Delhi, uniform glow discharge plasma at the atmospheric pressure over large surface area has been developed by optimizing reactor design and process parameters. Using this plasma, polyester (PET) and nylon fabrics were treated for 10-60 s under different gasses. The treatment significantly enhanced the water absorbency and surface energy of both the nylon and PET fabrics. In nylon-6, the properties imparted by plasma treatment did not change even after 25 days. However, in PET, the absorbency and surface energy were found to reduce slowly with time of storage. The samples did not degrade during plasma treatment and showed insignificant change in mechanical properties. The atmospheric pressure glow discharge plasma can effectively and safely be used to modify surfaces of textile substrates at reduced process and environment cost.

Keywords: Atmospheric pressure plasma, Glow discharge plasma, Nylon-6, Plasma treatment, Polyester

IPC Code: Int. Cl.8 D06M10/00, H05H