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Wool Carpets Better Than Human-made Fibres

11 August 2015

NEW ZEALAND – Woollen carpets have several advantages over flooring made of man-made fibres, including health benefits, research has revealed.

Wool carpets play a “significant role” in reducing common indoor air contaminants as well as absorbing noise and improving safety around the home, according to Ag Research New Zealand.

Ill health can be reduced in the workplace by wool carpeting neutralising formaldehyde, nitrogen dioxide and sulphur dioxide, often encountered as indoor contaminants, says the research group.

“The acoustic advantages are also significant – wool carpets effectively absorb noise,” said an AgResearch spokesperson. “Their porous surface means sound waves penetrate into the pile, rather than being reflected back into the room.”

The group noted improvements in “physical safety”, stating that higher frictional properties of carpets result in fewer falls, with the added benefit of a cushioning effect reducing injury.

The announcement comes during new research into the effect of carpet design on human spatial perception and the suitability of certain carpets in age-care facilities.

For the first time, Ag Research New Zealand says theories about “busy” carpet patterns being visually challenging are being tested.

Dr McNeil, who is involved in the experiments, said: “While the carpet perhaps looks a bit ‘busy’ for people with normal vision, for older persons who have naturally deteriorated vision it is less ‘busy’ but still interesting and clear.

“We asked subjects, who had normal vision, to walk on the carpets and closely observed them. The subjects wore a face shield with a yellow lens that simulated the vision of a typical 80-year-old.

“We got the subjects to carry a container filled with water which made them concentrate on two tasks walking and carrying and it also meant they couldn’t see their feet.”

TheSheepSite News Desk