Missouri Patent of the Month – May 2022

Natural fabrics like cotton and hemp are known to provide a natural resistance to UV radiation. For instance, unbleached cotton has natural lignins which act as UV absorbers. Unfortunately, athletic wear is unable to take advantage of this natural protection, as they are typically fabricated from synthetic fibers. The only way to improve UV protection in this case would be the use of chemical additives which may be costly and harmful long term. The Sweet Living Group, LLC has developed an alternative method of incorporating UV protection into fabrics before they are even woven. 

Their zinc oxide additive is designated Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) by the FDA and goes beyond UV protection to add antimicrobial properties. This additive can be incorporated into synthetic polymers using a reaction between the reactive group in the additive and the polymer’s C-H bonds. 

With this additive, athletic wear can provide protection against the sun, which means you’re better protected on an outdoor run. The antimicrobial properties also help protect against bacterial growth and odor – which is another benefit on an outdoor run. The Sweet Living Group’s technology isn’t limited to athletic wear though. It can be applied to any synthetic fabric needed to block UV radiation. This technology goes hand in hand with the company’s Eco-Friendly fabric technologies.

Are you developing new technology for an existing application? Did you know your development work could be eligible for the R&D Tax Credit and you can receive up to 14% back on your expenses? Even if your development isn’t successful your work may still qualify for R&D credits (i.e. you don’t need to have a patent to qualify). To find out more, please contact a Swanson Reed R&D Specialist today or check out our free online eligibility test.

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