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An environmentally responsible polyester dyeing technology using liquid paraffin

liquid paraffinAbstract:Two major challenges for sustainability of the textile industry are water consumption and hazardous industrial effluents. A solvent dyeing technology for polyethylene terephthalate fabrics was developed to facilitate the reduction of chemical consumption and to eliminate the use of water. Liquid paraffin was selected as the optimum dyeing medium from a collection of 110 organic solvents using a combination of Hansen solubility parameters and environmental, health, and safety profiles. The solvent dyeing method developed in the present work offers three advantages over traditional aqueous dyeing: high quality dyed goods without using water and auxiliaries, efficient reduction of surface oligomers without additional reduction cleaning and easy reuse of spent dye liquors. As a result, negative environmental impacts can be minimized compared to conventional aqueous process. Substantial savings in chemicals (115 kg per metric ton of dyed polyester) and water (70 m 3 per metric ton of dyed polyester) can be achieved. The result of a 7-cycle reuse sequence demonstrates excellent color consistency of dyed fabrics.

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By implementing the principle of reducing waste, reusing, and recycling resources, the solvent dyeing process developed in this study effectively reduces the consumption of chemicals and eliminates the use of water. Compared with traditional aqueous dyeing method, the solvent dyeing is a promising alter-native technology for the protection of scarce freshwater resource and for sustainability of the textile industry.
1.    Introduction
Two biggest sustainability challenges for textile industry arewater consumption and hazardous industrial effluents (Alkaya andDemirer, 2014). For example, conventional dyeing process forpolyethylene terephthalate (PET, polyester) utilizes a large amountof water and chemicals (DeSimone, 2002; Ferrero and Periolatto,2012; Hicks and Dietmar, 2007). The discharged wastewater contains various kinds of hard-to-destroy surfactants and unused dyes(Hicks and Dietmar, 2007). Dyeing one kilogram of fiber mayrequire almost 100 L of water (DeSimone, 2002). Given the highproduction volume of PET (48 million metric tons in 2014)(Association, 2015), dyeing process not only leaves large waterfootprint on the planet but also suffers from the increasing costs ofwastewater treatment (Chico et al., 2013; Hoque and Clarke, 2013;Jiang et al., 2010). Therefore, it is highly desirable to develop awater-free and effluent-free dyeing process in order to conserve thescarcewater resources, reduce the negative environmental impactsand improve the economic sustainability.
Considerable efforts have been made tofind new dyeing mediato replace the role of water in dyeing of PET in past decades. Themost activefields are supercritical carbon dioxide (ScCO2) dyeingtechnology (Banchero, 2013; Hou et al., 2010; Long et al., 2014) andsolvent dyeing technology (Gebert, 1971; Kim et al., 2006). Each hasits strengths and weaknesses.
ScCO2 dyeing is a waterless dyeing process that exploits the unique properties of super critical fluids. The advantages of ScCO2 dyeing have been described in several excellent reviews (Bach et al., 2002; Hou et al., 2010; Lewis, 1999). This new dyeing technique appears to be ecologically attractive for the textile industry. How-ever, one disadvantage of ScCO2 dyeing technology is the high pressure requirement in the dyeing process. Process conditions of up to 300 bars are unusual for the dyeing mills (Bach et al., 2002).