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regenerated fibers

raw material usually trees, alternative-bamboo, wet spun, needs bleaching and washing, dry clean only, biodegrades ex.rayon, lyocell, acetate/triacetate

synthetic fibers

raw material from petrochemicals, spinning is clean, no washing but energy, easy care, does not biodegrade, often not recycled
ex.nylon, polyester, olefin, acrylic


wet spun, 1910/11, HWM- less aging, less strong chemicals, can be drawn, loss of strength when wet, more washable, high cost


solvent spun variation of wet spinning, amine oxide, rounder cross section, more drawing, produced from farm raised trees, moderate cost.


1924, dry spun, didn't dye with existing dyes, low cost with good draping, durable, weak when wet, not absorbent, resistant to bleach, lobular cross section, dry clean recommended.


uses methylene chloride, less wrinkles, low elasticity, cannot be ironed well

environmental impact of regenerated fibers

soil erosion, destroy habitats, cutting old growth trees, management of old growth forests, acid rain, dry clean only

environmental impact of synthetics

drilling in sensitive ecosystems, loss of habitat, transport costs and hazards, oil spills, energy intensive.

fiber spinning steps

1.prepare dope, extrude, solidify.

wet spinning

oldest, complex, weak fibers, washing and bleaching required, chem. intensive

dry spinning

direct process, solvent recovered, no washing needed

melt spinning

least expense, direct process, high spinning speeds needed, no solvents, no washing, high energy use, fibers shaped like spinneret whole


1939, melt spun, cold drawn, elastic, low melting point, least sunlight resistance, dyeable, poor cover, oleophilic, hydrophobic, excellent resiliency, easy care.


1951, melt spun, hot drawn, hydrophilic, oleophilic, prone to static, good elasticity, used in fiberfil.


produced in 60's, low melting point, no ironing, strong, inexpensive, hydrophobic, good wicking, resistant to abrasion, lightweight, high tenacity, excellent resiliency, erodes soil.


addition polymer, dry or wet spun, excellent resiliency (does not wrinkle), excellent sunlight resistance, low density, pilling, non-biodegradable.


both natural source and synthetic, cannot be drycleaned, excellent elasticity, poor resistance to aging, sunlight, oil, and perspiration, low dyeability.


1958, wet spun, segmented polyurethane, superior to rubber in aging and tenacity, can be dry cleaned


1974, aromatic polymide, wet or dry spun, drawn, solution dyed, static prone


melt spun, no apparel uses, nonabsorbent, incombustible, high stregth, no flex resistance.


1949, addition polymer, dry spun, hot drawn, flame retardant, less durable than acrylic, produces realistic fake furs.


water vapor permeable, water and wind resistant, used as films and fibers,

polylactic acid (PLA)

fermented cornstarch, melt spun, soft like silk, biodegradable.

producing synthetic fibers through addition

take one monomer and force it to react with itself which produces a single bond.

producing synthetic fibers through condensation

condensation polymerization-first way that was used to make polymerization, force chemical reaction between two polymers which gives you a biproduct (often water) -cold or hot drawn

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