Location: Cotton Structure and Quality Research
Project Number: 6054-44000-080-015-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement
Start Date: Sep 1, 2022
End Date: Aug 31, 2025
Develop new quality characterization methods for natural fibers such as cotton or hemp. Specifically, the objectives are to develop methods to characterize fiber quality parameters with importance to the textile industry such as 1) length distribution, 2) fineness distribution, and 3) non-fiber content. Also, we will investigate the the relationships between these parameters and yarn quality.
ARS has access to a diverse collection of natural fiber samples, specifically cotton and hemp, which the cooperator may use in the achievement of the objectives. Standard textile testing equipment will be used as a starting point for the developmental work. The fiber sampling components, such as combs and brushes, will need to be examined and modifications made to improve sampling on diverse fiber types. Clamps, clamp surfaces, sensors, and instrument software will need to be modified to: 1) accept more diverse fiber types, and 2) report the desired fiber quality data. Reference methods developed by the textile industry, such as manual examination of the fibers, will be used to benchmark automated fiber quality measurement results. The outcome of this work will be used to determine the relationships between fiber and yarn quality and will allow natural fiber breeders and processors to better understand the quality parameters of natural fibers.