The Index Project
Index Award 2017 Finalists
Textile Cleaned With Sunlight
Nano-enhanced textiles can clean themselves

The water crisis is the #1 global risk based on impact to society, and approximately one billion people remain without a decent water supply. This number keeps increasing and it is estimated that by 2025, 1.8 billion people will live in regions of severe water scarcity. In contrast, the sun is an infinite source of energy that we have at our disposal, and nanotechnologies offer new promise in efficiently harvesting this naturally abundant energy source.

Textile Cleaned With Sunlight is a fabric designed with a focus on shifting from water to sunlight. The designers used nano-threads to create a fabric that can be cleaned with nothing more than sunlight. Silver and copper nanostructures woven throughout the textiles absorb sunlight. This then heats up the fabric on small scales and breaks down organic matter. In other words, when the fabric is exposed to light, it breaks down and eliminates e.g. a food stain.

Textile Cleaned With Sunlight is a climate-friendly way of fulfilling the day-to-day needs of our societies, and the implementation of it will drive down household water consumption worldwide - a big boon particularly in severely drought-prone areas. Textile Cleaned With Sunlight may provide a true anti-stain fabric that never has to be washed or dry-cleaned, which represents a powerful example of how technology and design can be closely integrated to create value and long-lasting impact. Overall, this design will preserve a huge amount of water for our future generations.