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item McAlister Iii, David
item Chun, David
item Gamble, Gary
item Godbey, Luther

Submitted to: Journal of Cotton Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/12/2005
Publication Date: 3/1/2005
Citation: McAlister III, D.D., Chun, D.T., Gamble, G.R., Godbey, L.C., Cobb, D.R. 2005. The impact of carding micro-climates on cotton moisture content and fiber and yarn quality. Journal of Cotton Science 9:97-101..

Interpretive Summary: With the recent interest in moisture addition to cotton at ginning, it is important to understand if increased fiber moisture content in the cotton bale will also benefit the textile manufacturing by remaining in the cotton during processing. The results of this work indicate that the starting moisture content in a cotton bale does not hold through carding in standard atmospheric conditions, and the only way to minimize the loss of moisture is by modifying the standard atmospheric conditions surrounding the card, which decreases short fiber content and improves yarn processing and quality. This work is important because it demonstrates that by controlling the micro-climate surrounding the card, the drying effect of increased temperatures surrounding the cylinder of the card can be overcome, which results in improved processing for the textile manufacturer and offers an avenue for technological advancement for the carding mmachine manufacturer.

Technical Abstract: Temperature and relative humidity are important considerations for carding cotton in textile manufacturing. It has been suggested that high relative humidity decreases the stiffness of fibers and increases the moisture content of the fiber. With the recent interest in moisture adidtion to cotton at the gin, it is important to understand if the moisture in the cotton at the bale still remains after processing through cardin at the textile mill. In this study, a standard carding atmosphere and a modified atmosphere of low temperature and high humidity were utilized for the treatments. Bales of the same variety and module were ginned sequentially in order to provide low variability in the fiber properties between bales. All cotton was processed on the same textile equipment with the variable being the atmospheric conditions surrounding the card. The results of this work indicate that increasing the relative humidity at cool temperature minimizes the loss in moisture content of the cotton fiber through carding, and improves short fiber content in carded and finisher drawing sliver. Rotor yarn processing and quality were not affected by the treatments. However, ring yarn processing efficiency improved and ring and vortex yarn quality was improved as a result of the cooler, moist air surrounding the card.