The dominant type of polymer particles in water, sediment, and various organisms partly derives from natural and synthetic fibres released in the washing process. Pollution of aquatic recipients with these particles poses an interdisciplinary problem throughout the world. Wastewater from washing represents a dispersion system with different particle sizes that is also loaded with the source of the particles. Due to this complex system, the qualification and quantification of this type of pollution is difficult. In this paper, the laser diffraction technique was applied to characterize particles in effluents from washing and rinsing materials made of a mixture of cotton and polyester. The results obtained through the analysis prove that the laser diffraction technique is acceptable for the characterization of a composite effluent sample. The advanced statistical technique of multivariate analysis confirmed the interrelationship of the parameters of this complex dispersion system.
Keywords: cluster analysis; dispersion system; particle size distribution; particles; textiles matrix; washing.