Photochromic pigment powder is one of the most amazing innovations in the world of fashion. Well, the textile industry has always been a hot spot for rapidly changing trends, the technological innovations have now added a functional accuracy in this spectrum. The application of photochromic pigment to create an extensive appeal in the fashion apparel industry has revamped the entire scenario.
Use of UV-radiation sensors has opened the avenues of innovation in this line. Popularly known as the concept of smart textiles, this technology uses chemicals such as photochromic powder to alter certain compositions of the fabric and further enhance its properties to deliver versatility and functionality. The photochromic pigments are subjected to change their colour while exposed to light.
The fabric with the print of photochromic colours will boast a reversible reaction while exposed to the ultra-violet rays without any fatigue. This powder has certain fastness properties including sublimation, crocking, washing and light. Other than its scientific compositions and elements, there is much more to know about the use of photochromic pigment powders in textile printing. Let’s begin with some interesting things to understand its mechanism.
Photochromic Pigment in Textiles
The simplest way to understand the function of photochromic powder in the textile industry is to observe a change in colour from its neutral state at point A to a colourful state at point B. This mechanism happens while the fabric or the photochromic pigment is exposed to natural sunlight or UV radiations. Photochromic colours are profound to absorb light and further react within their composition to make their effect on the textile or fabric visible.
After the absorption, the light will change the arrangements of the molecules, which will automatically rearrange the bondings creating a new structure to enhance or highlight the colour. Photochromic colours are available in both organic as well as non-organic compounds to perform the effect on the fabric. The inorganic substances are not recommended for the dyeing applications as they include metals and minerals. Coming to the organic photochromic pigment, there are different compounds including Spiropyrans, Naphthopyrans, Spirooxazines, Fulgimides, fulgides and Diarylethylenes among the most important ones.
The application of the photochromic colours pigment while creating the product happens as the information or the design is created through a liquid crystalline polymer layer with the help of a laser. This further heats the polymer or the fabric at a temperature over the phase transition. After the process of cooling is done, the chemical change is stored in a glass state. The overall product gets features including high contrast storage, potential stability, extreme sensitivity and resolution. Photochromic pigment solutions or dyes are visible in off-white colour before getting exposed to the UV radiations. Next, you know what happens. Once it’s exposed in front of the light, it changes its colour.
Photochromic Pigment Application
Considering its exclusive application in the textile market, the photochromic pigment powder is applied using different methods including dyeing, printing and of course praying methods. On commercial grounds, its application can be seen in,
- Branding that includes the company’s logo or name imprints on the fabric.
- Its application on security devices is also profound to ensure confidentiality.
- It is also applied in the packaging industry as cloth-based packaging solutions are quite in since environmental protection laws have been passed.
- The fashion apparel industry is already on the boom with the invention or better discovery of these magical pigments.
- One interesting application is also found in the optical industry that allows it to create an ophthalmic lens with the potential to change the clear colour in the outdoors to black.
The photochromic pigment has immense potential in the fashion industry. Not just it will open a plethora of market to the manufacturers, but it will also transform the essence of fashion. If you are a manufacturer, this exclusive technology would allow you to create a spectacular statement in the fashion world. Get your hands on this smart technology before it joins the trend cycle.