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Moisture wiicking, or maybe extra dry garments: Diapers

There are superhydrophobic surfaces that water just runs off made with high pitched microneedles ||||||| on their surface. Similarly there is a autowetting surface that looks sort of like an array of angle sided troughs. __/__/ Use lasers to microengrave these shaped onto the polymer threads garments are made from to make them variously super moisture wicking-away or possibly hyper-dry to the touch.
 
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I think people should be genetically engineered to be hairless except head hair but impervious to weather (all of arctic to sahara extremes) and go nude all the time.

So what is going on with making better polymer garments?

Well, I'm wearing clothes, and I've seen other people do it too.

There are superhydrophobic (water beads off of) surfaces that water just runs off made with high pitched needles on their surface ||||| [link]. I imagine these either feel like

Interestingly, the links I have seen do not mention the heights of the needles. It is possible that with the right polymer (stiff, upright) they could still repel water but be ten times as tall, providing water vapor a chance to evaporate from the skin. That would avoid the ||||| superhydrophobic polymer (I think woven, but if they can make planar work, ok) perhaps being clammy.

At the hyperhydrophilic (water clings to) \__/\__/ trough array geometry you might get what some natural fibers are said to do, wick away moisture for greater comfort. So, the question is then, can \__/\__/ troughs outperform cotton? Making cotton obsolete gets a lot of people out of agriculture and into doing some other thing they will like better that is more lucrative, so synthetic fibers that outperform all natural fibers actually support human well being.

Outperforming cotton could be related to having trough arrays with nontrough channels between the troughs, or even some mixed application where ||||| needles between troughs cause some kind of moisture concentration pattern. Underwear cotton-replacment microgeometry could be different than shirt cotton replacement geometry.

I think the patents on goretex have expired. Goretex might uses micropore traversing a slick polymer that water runs off of, but water vapor escapes through the pores keeping the person unhumid, noncondensating, and dry. Similar material, a vapor barrier is also used to wrap houses with (keeps out water, lets out water vapor). This could combine in slightly new ways with the troughs and needles.

If the troughs have High rims, that it is like a bunch of hollows with sort of "tall bollards" between them, then the amount of actual skin-to-surface (woven/planar) contact between the person and their shirt could be very miniscule. Like the outer perimeter of 10x10 times table as the tall rim is the only thing that touches the skin. But, because these rims are on troughs, if there is any liquid water it adheres (wets) the troughs, which I think could also have wiking-away channels at its geometry. As a wearing sensation this might feel very dry even if perspiring. It might even feel very dry if soaked with water (the rims extend above the wetness of the troughs.

So, I suppose along with the material itself, a new kind of diaper fabric is the .5B idea: Laser-produced microtextured diaper surfaces with hydrophilic troughs having high rims that extend above the troughs. As a diaper this would keep babies dryer feeling, which I think they like.

High rim trough geometries also work on athleticwear of course, and could just be extra comfy warm weather shirting that is better than cotton.

Making trough and needle geometry fabrics cheaply: Thread: having say an octagon shaped optical chamber surrounding the single vertically passing thread with a rapidly pulsed laser field microengraves troughs and needles into it. There is another possibility, and that is "hot melt impressing" where microengraving-patterned rollers simply roll on the thread (or have the moving thread pass through the rollers) to make the needles and troughs.

Hot melt impressing might actually work really well and be very extra cheap. Lasers might be better through as the rollers (molds) don't exist to get dirty, and there are fewer moving parts, and, one I like a lot, you can change the geometry identity instantly at any particular batch at the thread factory (flexible manufacturing). Switch not just from needles to troughs with no moving parts, but to troughs with goretex pores in the bases.

Also, lasers have the advantage of being able to work very well at engraving different materials. I think microengraving with actual contact hot melt rollers could not flexibly switch from one kind of polymer (different melt temperature) to another without intervention. I think lasers might be able to adapt their engraving to any polymer filament (thread) with just software. If the microneedles are actually needles on a "spiky collander" Then you get even greater dirt and water repellency than goretex, but noting this is a laser treatment on anything from individual threads to planar surfaces it could be very cheap.

Making the diapers is kind of interesting because my perception is that disposable diapers are sort of like felt or oriented-strand board, not woven like a fabric weave at all, but definitely different than say a planar sheet of cling-wrap. So, wherever they get the microfibers they press into felt for diapers they could laser microengrave the microfibers with high sided (rim/bollard) trough arrays that wick liquid but have super minimal skin contact area and feel dry to the touch.

You can also laser engrave the microgeometry on the felt, pre-diaper. At some giant factory where diaper making felt is traversing in 3 meter wide swaths on 3 meter sized rollers a laser above the roller that looks like a long [ ] hoizontal tetris piece is busy zapping/microengraving the felt. One laser above the felt and one below should work, they might even have different patterns.

Regarding babies and diapers there is an interesting opportunity to go from building something you think babies want to finding out what babies actually like and makes them measurably (quantifiably even) smile more and cry less.

Laser microengraved diaper lining fabric is a big opportunity for that because the microengraving can make a really wide variety of effects. Maybe hypervelvet softness with zero tolerance for liquid moisture is great on leg perimeters and gathers. Perhaps babies are actually really into gore-tex like general humidity decrease when unsoiled. Maybe they like Angora-sweater texture that wicks away moisture to always stay dry. Diaper experts could try hundreds of variations and qualitatively measure the amount of smiles and the lack of crying. They could even measure the number of times a baby awakens during the night, and the amount the baby cries during he night to see if diaper variations can reduce night awakenings and night crying. Laser microengraving makes the diaper products that babies like best cheap and affordable.

Also |||| (superhydrophobic needle geometry} socks likely repel dirt naturally.

Addressing a caution: Needle and trough microsurfaces are pretty well known, and I'm not aware of any people or companies that made a billion dollar application out of them. Perhaps car windshields or bridge paint are things I read about. I think the difference here is that the microengraved fabrics are also basically disposable. From the extreme of diapers to everyone just sort of expecting a pair of socks to be not-so-new after 40 washes the temporariness of fabric could make up for the possibility of the microengraving to wear off.

Side application: Better bandages, band-aids and surgical dressings:

They talk about wet and dry dressings in medicine. I do not know which is better, or what the various forms are used for. With microengraved troughs or needles, noting that with 11 times height needles skin can breathe (that is vapor can drift away) even if there are roll-around beads of fluid atop the needles. Also noting, that with high rim/bollards at the sides of troughs you can customize amount of actual skin-to-fabric contact from say 1-100% contact I think laser microengraved bandages could really benefit people.

beanangel, Dec 17 2020

[link]






       Is this being looked into?...   

       <shrugs>
Depends...
  

       [2 fries] Its possible posting it on the halfbakery makes it public domain and gives it a gentle push forward. Last I heard halfbakery.com has 153 search entries at uspto.gov the US patent office search engine.
beanangel, Dec 17 2020
  

       Naw dude, I was just poking a bit of fun.
"Depends" is a brand of adult undergarments for incontinence here.
  

       I don't know enough to understand whether your idea has merit yet, but so far it sounds like you've given it some thought and I eagerly await learning things I had no way to know that I didn't know. (+)   

       [beanangel] You've forgotten Dune like survival suits.   

       I am guessing, but wouldn't self assembling coatings give the surface better than the large scale (fabric rolls) deep laser burn patterning. Some water collecting insects have significant sized patterning with hydrophillic and hydrophobic sections.
wjt, Dec 17 2020
  

       Self assembling coatings are awesome, and its fun to think about a deeper richer future than what is instantly orderable on the internet now.   

       I mean, with a little development you can have a shirt (unless you are going nude) with the ability to elevate one particular kind of fiber, or one "arch" of a a weave to the topmost body contacting surface, and have that fiber or arch be purpose specific.   

       Say a cotton polyester shirt that only sticks out it's cotton so it always feels like cotton on your skin, except when it rains, or there's a perspiration event then it sticks out it's ||||| textured polymer threads/weave arch to keep you feeling dryer.   

       With a little more technology you can have it # tennis net spaced, but automatically adjustable/adjusting to 300 threads per inch Quallofill mesh at a third internal layer of the weave.   

       That sounds elaborate but what the "shirt sandwich" does is that quallofill, a hollow fiber/good insulator (sleeping bags) goes from being far apart # and bunched together like a tennis net, to being uniformly spread out, like fancy 300 threads per inch linens, and thus goes from making the shirt 99.5% breezy to 100% insulative. The effect for the wearer is that when the quallofill spreads out the shirt turns insulative and warmer.   

       Thinking of the easiest cheapest way to do this is entertaining. Materials are interesting too. Quallofill (+) already exists and looks like a tube lumen divided with a + so there are four still air spaces in every eentsy quallofill fiber. Funny people might commission reflectorized vacuum filled quallofill ultra-fabric for sartorial/utility entertainment. Hey, maybe genetic algorithms can be used to optimize quallofill, why 4 plenums? Why not 8. How about flash-coating the quallofill with IR reflector (some might go for metal, others might go for some other optically transparent material) so each quallofill fiber is something a little like a dewar flask (mirror thermos).   

       I am really impressed about the hydrophilic and hydrophobic insect surface. It wasn't the Somerset insect specifically, but when I looked up fog gathering insects because of your mention, I found out 3D printed spherical bug substitutes gather fog also.
beanangel, Dec 17 2020
  

       //I think people should be genetically engineered to be hairless except head hair // Can you explain your reasoning here? Why is head hair good but non-head hair bad? Other animals seem to manage fine with functioning non-head hair, and there is also the invention of The Hat which renders head hair also superfluous.   

       //but impervious to weather (all of arctic to sahara extremes)// I think there are basic engineering reasons why this is not a sensible proposition, to do with heat retention / dissipation requirements in those different environments.
pocmloc, Dec 17 2020
  

       //I imagine these either feel like//   

       Don't leave us hanging, what do they feel like?
RayfordSteele, Dec 17 2020
  

       They feel like premature paragraph breaks, obviously.
pertinax, Dec 20 2020
  

       //3D printed spherical bug substitute// Great insult.
pocmloc, Dec 20 2020
  
      
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