Submitted to: Proceedings of Pittcon Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/26/2006
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: The presence of cotton trash has been a problem for the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for some time now. It affects the proficiency of cotton from processing to production. Even though there are several techniques currently being employed to detect the presence of trash in cotton, there is a need for more innovative ways to better classify problematic trash in cotton fibers. It is important to be able to identify cotton trash at different stages of processing. Therefore, different trash samples (leaf, stem, hull, seed coat) were subjected to various thermal conditions as well as various size reductions in order to simulate ginning and textile processes. In addition, trash samples were extracted so that identification could be better distinguished among the trash samples. Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopic measurements exhibit a potential in the efforts of characterizing different trash types.
Technical Abstract: The United States Department of Agriculture continues to examine an existing spectral database for improvements, where cotton trash is identified through mid-infrared spectroscopy. Leaves, hulls, shales, stems, seeds, and other trash have a negative impact on cotton quality and textile processing. To evaluate trash levels for processing, several techniques approximate the quantity of cotton trash (ex. Shirley Analyzer, AFIS, and HVI) based on size and weight. However, more innovative methods are required to identify and classify specific types of trash found in cotton. In simulating ginning and textile processes, this research subjected botanical trash samples (leaf, hull, stem, and seed coat) to several size reductions (original, fragment, and powder) and various thermal conditions (ambient, 93 deg C, 148 deg C). After these treatments, the samples were extracted using solvents based on polarity (water, methanol, and hexane) and prepared for spectroscopy analysis. FTIR spectroscopy equipped with a single diamond ATR crystal was used for the fundamental characterization of these different samples. "Fingerprint" regions for each trash type were evaluated for differences that might occur due to thermal and physical modifications during processing.