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Physical and Chemical Transformations of Silver Nanomaterials in Textiles After Use and Disposal



Danielle E. Gorka, Justin Gorham


Silver nanomaterials (AgNMs) have been increasingly used in consumer products for their antibacterial properties. Textiles, including wound dressings, are just one of the many products which take advantage of AgNM's antimicrobial properties. To better understand realistic transformations that may occur to these materials upon entrance into the environment, more work needs to be performed to determine the chemical and physical properties of AgNM- containing consumer products throughout their lifecycle. Previous work demonstrated transformations to AgNM containing wound dressings during simulated use (e.g. wound fluid and sweat exposure). The aim of the current work is to evaluate transformations these same textiles undergo during modeled environmental exposure. To model textile disposal conditions, the pristine wound dressings were exposed to synthetic freshwater or artificial landfill leachate. All specimens were analyzed before and after exposure with the techniques DLS, UV-Vis, XRD, XPS, SEM, EDS, and ICP-MS. Electron microscopy showed the formation of chloride and phosphorous containing crystals on the surface of the commercial wound dressing after synthetic fresh water exposure. The surface was found to be heterogeneous with some areas showing increased porosity compared to other areas that were similar to the pristine material. Wound dressing exposed to artificial landfill leachate showed increased porosity compared to pristine wound dressing. Unlike synthetic fresh water, no micron-sized crystals were found on the surface of the artificial landfill leachate exposed textile. Future studies will evaluate the transformations that occur to wound dressings exposed to simulated disposal conditions after being treated with test media for simulating use, thus representing more realistic end-of-use scenarios.
Proceedings Title
TechConnect World Technology Proceedings
Conference Dates
May 13-16, 2018
Conference Location
Anaheim, CA, US
Conference Title
TechConnect World Innovation Conference


silver, nanomaterials, characterization, textile, acticoat


Gorka, D. and Gorham, J. (2018), Physical and Chemical Transformations of Silver Nanomaterials in Textiles After Use and Disposal, TechConnect World Technology Proceedings, Anaheim, CA, US, [online], (Accessed April 13, 2024)
Created May 14, 2018, Updated April 11, 2022