Cotton and crisis management

Cotton and crisis management

Technical applications of cotton are finding applications in crisis management scenarios. Recently, India’s largest oil and gas company, ONGC uses cotton-based absorbent mats for absorbing oil spills. Cotton-based filters are finding applications in face covers during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Technical applications of cotton are finding applications in crisis
management scenarios. Recently, India’s largest oil and gas company,
ONGC uses cotton-based absorbent mats for absorbing oil spills.
Cotton-based filters are finding applications in face covers during the
Covid-19 pandemic.

Also read: Cotton face covers

Covid-19
situation has revealed that cotton influences the stability of viruses,
which is important in developing countermeasures products like masks
from cellulosic materials. Research efforts have highlighted cotton
destabilises virus relatively quickly than plastics.

Also read: China deal and cotton

Cotton
is an established fiber in fibre to fashion supply chain and genuine
interest is emerging to explore new applications for cotton in health
and environmental sectors.

Slowly, cotton products are
penetrating into crisis management situations in health care and
environmental sectors. For 21 years, the Nonwovens and Advanced
Materials Laboratory at Texas Tech University managed by this scribe has
been researching on advanced applications of cotton. Recently, the
research activities are getting commercial acceptance.

Also read: Virus war in textiles sector

One
recent recognition has been international, with the acceptance of the
cotton-based mat as an oil absorbent by India’s leading oil exploration
public sector entity, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC). Recently,
during July 10-12, cotton-based absorbent pads have been effectively
used by ONGC at its Godavari river delta oil well sites in Rajahmundry.

ONGC
is India’s largest crude and natural gas company and is ranked 18th
among global players in oil and gas operations with over 30,000
employees. Penetration of cotton-based absorbent technology into this
premier Indian company is a milestone with regard to the acceptance of
cotton as a high performance fibre. Cotton-based nonwoven mats have
moved along from the testing phase to commercial use phase, according to
Nambi Srinivasan, vice president of Chennai, India-based WellGro
United.

This scribe has been collaborating with WellGro United
and its partners to translate ideas to market place. Speaking about the
acceptance of the product by ONGC, Nambi Srinivasan stated, “It was a
much awaited and prestigious order for us. With the recent positive
field results of cotton-based pads, at an ONGC site, we are confident
that the ONGC’s order opens-up new opportunities globally.”

In a
similar vein, cotton-based nonwoven mats are finding applications as
filters in face covers. Lubbock-based Scarborough Specialties has
released face covers with cotton nonwoven filters, which evolved out of
research in our Nonwovens Laboratory.

By: Seshadri Ramkumar, Professor, Texas Tech University, USA

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