Disposable diapers were first introduced to the public in 1948. Before that, straps like loincloth were used all the time with the babies, and they made quite a mess causing constant concern for the parents. The early disposable diapers were mostly made of a sponge material to absorb the urine and could do nothing against the solid feces, but as technology is improved, the diapers got better too. They were made very effective with the use of polymer technology and other than being convenient, they are now very comfortable for the baby and for us to see as well.
[Image Source: Engineer Guy]
Contrary to common beliefs, there is a lot of clever engineering involved in the modern diapers, and they aren’t the portable sponges anymore, yet people still keep on believing they are. There are dozens of patents on the material, design and arrangement of the diaper cloth to make it as effective as it is today. The engineer guy from Youtube who analyzes the engineering design of different products is back with a very neat explanation of the diaper construction:
To sum it all up, it has a hydrophobic layer on top that can keep all the moisture away from the baby’s skin. The urine is then absorbed into a super-absorbent layer made up of polymer that expands as it gets more and more moisture inside. Obviously, there is a limit to the amount of moisture they can store inside, and we would be unwise not to change it after feeling whether it is heavy or not. But, the amount of comfort and relaxation they bring to the baby’s body is unprecedented, and special manufacturing processes are designed for this purpose alone. These processes are protected by secret patents but still, this design can probably show a manufacturing engineer enough to make a rough plan. Pretty cool, huh?