Keeping cool with chewing gum chemical

Published on April 20th, 2020

Musto has produced a collection for the British Sailing Team containing a chemical that helps keep sailors cool.

The Sunblock Dynamic range contains Xylitol, the chemical in chewing gum that gives the fresh sensation. This enables the kit to lower the surface temperature of the body by up to 3˚C (5°F).

Nick Houchin at Musto told Boating Business, “Xylitol yarns have a chemical reaction when in contact with water or sweat that provides a cooling effect. Combined with the nylon-based fabric, moisture is also absorbed and released to cool the surface temperature of the skin by up to 3 degrees.

Musto worked with the British Sailing Team to develop the garments that could specifically help cool them in the hot and humid conditions they were likely to encounter at the Olympics in Tokyo. The aim was to create a lightweight breathable garment which would actively cool them when it mattered most.

“If they are able to keep cooler than their competitors, it would give them a big advantage out on the racecourse,” explained Houchin.

The fabric technology was tested in laboratory conditions against a regular polyester sports garment. Observed after a 10 minute run in 23˚C at 65% humidity it was found to provide a surface temperature that was 1 – 3 degrees lower.

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