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item Gamble, Gary
item Foulk, Jonn

Submitted to: Textile Research Journal
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/6/2009
Publication Date: 5/4/2010
Citation: Gamble, G.R., Foulk, J.A. 2010. EFFECT OF OVERSPRAY TREATMENTS ON THE PROCESSING EFFICIENCY OF A 50/50 FLAX/COTTON BLEND. Textile Research Journal. 80(8):754-759.

Interpretive Summary: There are recently been increased interest in incorporating flax fiber into blends with cotton in order to attain new and desirable textile properties. The present work indicates that the addition of a polymeric microsphere suspension to cotton/flax blends results in increased cotton/flax blend yarn processing efficiency. The benefit of this to textile mills wishing to produce yarns from cotton/flax blends is in decreased cost of production. In addition, the enhancements seen in yarn strength and low spots are important factors in the subsequent processing of these yarns into knit and woven products, potentially resulting in improved fabric processing and appearance. Application of a salt solution to the surface of flax fibers also appears to result in beneficial effects to the processing environment, leading to a decrease in air particulates which may be a health and cleanliness concern. Optimization of these oversprays to cotton/flax blends with the goal of further enhancing production efficiencies and yarn quality is the subject of continuing investigation in this laboratory.

Technical Abstract: Limited studies exist related to short staple spinning of flax (Linum usitatissimum L.) and cotton (Gossypium hirsutum and Gossypium barbadense) blends. The purpose of this study was to determine if various surface chemical treatments, including water, salt solution, and a polymeric microsphere solution applied via rotor spraying techniques were either detrimental or beneficial to spinning. Results indicate that neither yarn processing efficiency nor yarn quality appears to be significantly influenced by any of the spray applications in the case of 100% cotton. However, in the case of the flax blend yarns studied, processing efficiencies were impacted with fewer ends-down in the case of the polymeric microsphere solution in conjunction with significant yarn quality improvements. In addition, application of a potassium malate salt solution also appears to significantly impact the amount of foreign matter present in the sliver, possibly due to anti-static effects. The beneficial effects produced are such that application of chemical oversprays appears to be a viable option for textile mills wanting to spin flax more efficiently. Results also indicate that chemical overspraying can be beneficial to yarn properties but additional research is needed for the optimization of this practice.