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Surface-Engineered Fire Protective Coatings for Fabrics through Sol-Gel and Layer-by-Layer Methods: An Overview

2016-1-1| 查看: 10

Fabric flammability is a surface-confined phenomenon: in fact, the fabric surface represents the most critical region, through which the mass and heat transfers, responsible for fueling the flame, are controlled and exchanged with the surroundings. More specifically, the heat the fabric surface is exposed to is transferred to the bulk, from which volatile products of thermal degradation diffuse toward the surface and the gas phase, hence feeding the flame. As a consequence, the chemical and physical characteristics of the fabric surface considerably affect the ignition and combustion processes, as the surface influences the flux of combustible volatile products toward the gas phase. In this context, it is possible to significantly modify (and improve) the fire performance of textile materials by “simply” tailoring their surface: currently, one of the most effective approaches exploits the deposition of tailored coatings able to slow down the heat and mass transfer phenomena occurring during the fire stages. This paper reviews the current state of the art related to the design of inorganic, hybrid, or organic flame-retardant coatings suitable for the fire protection of different fabric substrates (particularly referring to cotton, polyester, and their blends). More specifically, the use of sol-gel and layer-by-layer (LbL) methods is thoroughly discussed; then, some recent examples of flame retardant coatings are presented, showing their potential advances and their current limitations.
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