December 11, 2013
Sheffield, England-based Xeros Ltd. has developed a method for cleaning clothes that largely replaces water with polymer beads.
According to the company, its washing machines use 70 percent less water, 50 percent less energy and 50 percent less detergent than traditional appliances.
In order to promote the green clothing message, Xeros has joined the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC), which also includes Adidas, Burberry, Coca-Cola and Levi Strauss.
Xeros CEO Bill Westwater said: “We’re pleased to be joining the SAC, which is a natural fit for us, given the outstanding environmental benefits our machines deliver to users.”
Xeros’s technology was developed by Professor Stephen Burkinshaw from the University of Leeds, who discovered that certain types of polymer beads could be used for cleaning. The pellets can be reused, and when they have reached the end of their useful life as cleaners, they can be recycled.
The system is currently in use in the commercial hospitality sector, with customers including Hyatt, Crest Cleaners and Sterling Linen Services, according to Xeros. The company recently announced a technology partnership with BASF SE, and the firm plans to eventually offer the machines to consumers.