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Cotton

The Popular Natural Fibre


Cotton is a natural vegetable
fibre produced in the cotton
plant in many countries of the
world
Cotton is widely used Textile
Fiber in Textile Industry, due
to its versatile uses.

Defining Cotton
Cotton is a fibre that grows from the
surface of seeds on the pods or bolls. It is
composed basically of a woody substance
called Cellulose.

Types of Cotton
1. Sea Island Cotton
This is of the highest quality and the most valuable of commercial cottons. It
grows on the coast of the Gulf of Florida in Barbados and in other adjacent
islands where the climate is favorable.
2. Egyptian Cotton
There are two kinds of Egyptian cotton, brown and the other white. It is like
Sea Island cotton, very regular and contains few immature and dead fibres.
3. American Cotton
This is cultivated in the United States, and is the most abundant type of
cotton.
4. Indian Cotton
It is a short fibre of between 0.6 and 0.8 inch length. It is therefore only
suitable for spinning coarse count.
4. China Cotton
This is about the lowest commercially acceptable grade. Its twist is not
highly developed and it is rather harsh. It does not spin a good yarn alone,
and is usually used in a mixture with better qualities.

Cotton Polymer System

Cotton polymer is a liner, cellulose polymer.


The repeating unit is cellobiose which consists of two glucose unit.
Cotton consists of 5000 cellobiose units therefore degree of
polymerization is 5000. polymer length is about 5000nm and
thickness is 0.8 nm.
Cotton is a semi-crystalline fibre; crystalline regions are 65-70 %
while amorphous regions are 30-35 %.
Hydrogen bonding are the dominant and most important forces of
attraction between polymeric chains. OH,
-CH2OH give rise to hydrogen bonds.
The polymeric system can be imagined as roll of wire netting.

Cotton Fibre Morphology

Macro structure
Cotton appear as fine, regular fibre with little variation in diameter;
its diameter is not considered as critical as length. The fibre length
to breath ratio is 6000:1 for finer and long cotton and 350:1 for
shortest and coarser cotton type.
Its length is from 10mm-65mm.
Range in fibre diameter is from 11m 10 22 m.
Cotton color varies form near white to light tan. The colour depends
upon cotton type, soil, environmental and climatic conditions under
which it is grown.
Under microscope cotton looks like ribbon or twisted tube. These
twists or convolutions classified cotton under the microscope.
Convolutions are formed after the cotton ball burst open.
Cotton cross-section appears under the microscope as kidney
shape.

Characteristics of Cotton Fibre

Advantages
Cotton can be processed into a wide selection of fabrics. Among
the sheer fabrics are cambric, batiste, chiffon, lawn, organdy and
voile. Medium weight cottons include broadcloth, drill, flannel,
poplin, terrycloth and long cloth. The heavy weight cottons include
brocade, corduroy, denim, pique and velveteen.
Cotton can be mercerized to improve luster, absorbency, dyeability and strength.
Textured effects are easily achieved either by yarn structure (high
twist yarns, nub yarns, boucle yarns, and crimped yarns), fabric
construction (crepes, seersuckers) or application of special
finishes (embossing, napping).
Cotton fabrics can be easily dyed or printed with almost all the
classes of dyes. Pigment printing can be done with the help of a
binder.
Cotton is absorbent, does not build up static electricity and is a
good conductor of heat and hence is very comfortable to wear.

Characteristics of Cotton Fibre

Disadvantages
Untreated cotton wrinkles easily.
Cotton is susceptible to mildew if left
damp.
Cotton is flammable.
Fabrics take a long time to dry.

Various Finishes of Cotton


Mercerization- adds strength, improves lustre,
absorbency, dyeability
Sanforization-ensures less than 1 % shrinkage
Moireing- for variable luster and variable pattern
Glazing-gloss, smoothness and embossed
effects
Stiffening- smoothen, stiffens and strengthens
Wrinkle resistant permanent press- improves
shape-retension and imparts dip-dry
characteristic
Schreinerizing-adds luster

Various Finishes of Cotton


Stain repelling-for easy care
Napping-for softness, warmth and increased
absorbency
Singeing-for smoothness
Weighting-for bulk
Insulating-for warmth
Embossing-for decoration
Mildew resistant
Fire-retardant
Moth-resistant