The double protection has been achieved by treating fibres with indium tin oxide, a transparent oxide compound that is also used in the touchscreens on smart phones. In tests the treatment proved resistant to washing, abrasion and weathering. Tests also found that the treatment was not biologically harmful and did not make garments uncomfortable to wear.

Dr Edith Classen, project leader, predicted that the textiles would be mainly be used for occupational clothing. She added that they were also anti-static so would be ideal for the personal protective equipment market with applications including clothing for firemen, foundry workers and welders, the semi-conductor industry and staff maintaining telecommunications systems.