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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Digital Quantification of Microscopic Images to Determine Fiber Orientation in Nonwovens

Authors
item Goynes, Wilton
item Pusateri, Kathryn

Submitted to: Microscopy and Microanalysis
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: July 29, 2005
Publication Date: August 5, 2005
Citation: Goynes Jr, W.R., Pusateri, K.H. Digital quantification of microscopic images to determine fiber orientation in nonwovens. Proceedings of the Microscopy and Microanalysis Meeting. 2004. p. 1336-1337.

Interpretive Summary: Providing maximum strength for nonwoven textiles is of great importance for many nonwoven products, especially when cotton is blended with synthetic fibers. In woven fabrics strength is provided in perpendicular directions by the warp- and fill-yarns. Fibers in many nonwoven fabrics are not highly oriented but lie in different angles in the plane of the fabric. A program for digital image quantification has been adapted for determining degree of fiber orientation in any given direction within nonwovens. A computer program has been used to assign pixel grey-value increments to angles from 0 to 359o in an image of a nonwoven surface. The percentage of pixels within a given angle range represents the fibers oriented at that angle. Visual images, numerical tables, and graphs were generated to show directions of fibers in the nonwoven structures. The procedure has been applied to several nonwoven fabric patterns, and data evaluated to determine that fiber orientation measurements can be discerned successfully in fabrics of various fiber orientations using this method.

Technical Abstract: Providing maximum strength for nonwoven textiles is of great importance for many uses. This is especially important when natural fibers such as cotton are used in the product. Strength parameters are different in nonwovens than they are in woven fabrics. In woven fabrics strength is provided in perpendicular directions by the warp- and fill-yarns. Fibers in many nonwoven fabrics are not highly oriented but lie in different angles in the plane of the fabric. Although nonwoven fabrics may be engineered for specific use and thus with intended fiber orientations, these directions can only be directly determined by microscopical observations. With nonwovens blended of more than one fiber type, fiber order may become even more random. When a product of specific strength is needed and natural and synthetic fibers are blended, determination of fiber orientation can be of great importance. A program for digital image quantification has been adapted for determining degree of fiber orientation in any given direction within nonwovens. A computer program has been used to assign pixel grey-value increments to angles from 0 to 359o in an image of a nonwoven surface. Pixel orientations are grouped in 1.4o segments, and the data giving the counted pixel gray value within that angle can be grouped into any angle range. The percentage of pixels within a given angle range represents the fibers oriented at that angle. The procedure has been applied to several nonwoven fabric patterns, and data evaluated to determine that fiber orientation measurements can be discerned successfully in fabrics of various fiber orientations using this method.

Last Modified: 8/19/2014
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