Alumnus involved in creating and donating water-soluble infection control laundry bags to the NHS

Guy Broadbent (Chemistry and Polymer Science/Technology 1986) is Chairman of Aquapak, who have successfully manufactured and donated thousands of water-soluble laundry bags to the NHS, with the aim of reducing the spread of coronavirus.

Aquapak, a manufacturing company based in Birmingham, has developed the water-soluble laundry bag, made from Hydropol, a polymer resin based on the polymer polyvinylalcohol (PVOH). This new polymer technology dissolves at 60C and is non-toxic and harmless to marine life.

NHS workers can put worn uniform into the bag and put the bag straight into their washing machine, helping to prevent the spread of the virus into their homes.

Over 46,000 of these bags have been given free of charge to several NHS trusts across the UK and based on the positive response and impact, Aquapak are now scaling up production of these bags with manufacturing partners to provide to the NHS on a regular basis.

A member of the Loughborough Alumni Advisory Board, Guy has recently begun a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) between Aquapak and the University, working with Hydropol.

The KTP aims to study the interactions between PVOH and various surfaces to:

  • enable efficient processing of PVOH
  • create optimised adhesion of PVOH to specific substrates, thereby enabling increased recycling of, for example, packaging materials.