Highly noise-absorbent and odor-adsorbent seat and floor cover fabric systems for aircraft cabin interiors

Physical Sciences : Materials and Compounds

Available for licensing


  • Jonathan Chen, Ph.D. , School of Human Ecology; (also) Dept. of Textiles & Apparel

Background/unmet need

Activated carbon fiber (ACF) is a special type of carbon fiber with high performance of surface area and nano-porous structure. It has been used for making textile materials in forms of yarns, woven, knits, and nonwovens. Although these yarns and fabrics exhibit excellent performance in many end uses such as water/air purification, chemical solvent adsorption and recovery, biochemical decontamination, biochemical protective garment, and energy storage, their market growth is limited, mainly because of two major barriers: high cost and lack of manufacturing infrastructure. A scalable, low-cost method of ACF manufacturing would allow proliferation of ACF into various markets worldwide.

Invention Description

Researchers at The University of Texas at Austin have developed a method to produce transportation interior fabrics utilizing ACF that provide multifunctions of noise absorption, odor absorption, flame resistance, and electrical conductivity. The combination of these functions makes the developed fabric materials competitive in the applications for interiors of next-generation aircraft, vehicles, and trains.


  • Light weight, which is important in an aircraft application
  • Flame resistant and heat insulating
  • Low emission of smoke and toxic gas
  • Highly adsorbent for odor removal


  • High degree of noise dampening
  • Low cost production
  • Easily scalable manufacturing process

Market potential/applications

Aircraft manufacturers for standard implementation of this technology in new aircraft, and airlines for retrofitting existing aircraft with this technology.

Development Stage

Lab/bench prototype

IP Status

  • 1 PCT patent application filed