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Donate your pantyhose to science

Nancy’s Research Lab calls for collection of 10,000 tights by the end of May 2023. A test sample for developing an environmentally responsible recycling process for tights. At the helm of this research, doctoral student Pilar Chavez of the Institut Carnot Icéel set out for a real environmental challenge.

All those who’ve already worn tights know that, all it takes is one hitch, and the precious pair they sometimes bought the day before will end up in the trash. This is also the case for the 104,000 pairs of tights annually in France for the 130,000 tights sold. Real waste and a major source of pollution. If not burned, the stockings end up buried, while the materials that make them up decompose very slowly.

The goal is to find the raw materials to recreate the tights

Sandrine Hobby, researcher

It is to take on the environmental challenge of recycling socks that Peruvian doctoral student Pilar Chavez put forward Institut Carnot Essel in Nancystarted its research a year and a half ago in partnership with the startup sticky.

There aren’t a lot of textile recycling channels, and since I’m sensitive to environmental issues, I was interested in working on a problem of socks recycling that doesn’t exist at the moment.explains Pilar Chavez.

Two fibers currently make up tights: nylon and elastane, the scientific challenge is to separate these two fibers. A very complex process that the researcher will try to develop.

Today, all materials are mixed into tights and there are add-ons, you have to manage everything, that’s the real challenge“.

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Sandrine Hobby, dissertation co-supervisor and researcher at LRGP consent : “There will be different stages of separation using green chemistry. The goal is to find the raw materials to bring back the tights and close the ring“.

Call for a donation of 10,000 tights

We need black and flesh tights for the audition stage

Pilar Chavez, PhD student

To enter the audition stage, Pilar Chavez needs a lot of tights. So a large group was organized to take back about 10,000 tights by May 31, 2023.

We need a heterogeneous mass, regardless of composition, it must be black or flesh to experience the processExplain to us scientists.

Collection points were identified in the greater Nancy region, but also in Toulouse and Longueuil.

On Greater Nancy:

  • ENSIC Campus Reception, 1 Rue Grandville in Nancy (8:30 AM – 12 PM | 2 PM – 5 PM)
  • LRGP Reception, 1 Rue Grandville in Nancy (8:30am-12pm | 2pm-5pm)
  • Métropole du Grand Nancy, 22-24 Kennedy Bridge in Nancy (8am-12pm | 1pm-5pm)
  • Department of Communication, Faculty of Science and Technology, Boulevard des Aiguillettes, Vandoeuvre-lès-Nancy (9 am – 5 pm)
  • CNRS delegation reception, 17 rue Notre Dame des Pauvres, Vandoeuvre-lès-Nancy (8:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. | 1:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.)
  • BU of Campus Brabois, 9 Avenue de la Forêt de Haye, Vandoeuvre-lès-Nancy (8 a.m. to 7 p.m.)

In Toulouse:

  • Hospitalier de Toul Centre, 1 cours Raymond Poincaré, Toul (open 24 hours a day)
  • Residence les Ombelles, avenue Sebastien Choulette, Toul
  • Residence Chanoine Rion, rue de l’Hôpital Militaire, Toul

In the north of Meurthe-et-Moselle:

IUT Henri Poincaré de Longwy, 186 rue de Lorraine, Cosnes-et-Romain (8am-12pm | 1pm-5pm)

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Implementing environmentally responsible recycling will take time. After the lab tests and pilot phase, it will be time to consider a manufacturing study. But if the research is successful, it will be nothing short of a world first for the textile sector.

It’s a very concrete topic, people understand what my research is about, it’s motivating“, concludes the doctoral student.