Factors Involved in Scouring | Chemicals Use and Their Purposes in Scouring Process

Introduction:
Scouring is almost invariably the first wet process applied to textile materials. The object is remove oils, fats, waxes, soluble impurities and any particulate or solid dirt adhering to the fibers. The process consists essentially of treatment with a detergent with, or without, the addition of an alkali. When soap is used a good supply of soft water is essential but this is of less importance with the synthetic detergents, which, now occupy such a prominent position.

After the cloth still contains fats and waxes (both natural and added), due to the presence of which the cloth becomes non-absorbent. These are removed from the cloth by scouring, also called kiering, kier-boiling, boiling out etc.

Factors Involved in Scouring Process:
There are a number of factors that affect scouring performance. When cleaning solid surfaces, five variables become involved that interact during scouring and they are as follows:
  1. The nature of the surface to be cleaned.
  2. The nature of the dirt or soil.
  3. The chemicals to be used.
  4. The nature of the water or solvent.
  5. The nature of the detergent or soap.
Chemicals Use and Their Purposes in Scouring Process: 
 
Chemical

Use
Caustic(NaOH)
Neutralize acidic materials, saponify glycerides (Waxes and Oils,) and solubilize silicate.
Sodium Silicate
Penetrate and break down lignins in motes.
Surfactant
Reduces surface tension and minimize interfacial tensions.
Detergent
Emulsify oils, fats, and waxes; remove oil borne stains; suspend materials after they have been removed.
Chelating(Sequestering agent)
Deactivate metal ions.
Builder(Salt)
Cause detergents to become increasingly effective.
Solvent
Assist emulsification by dissolving oily materials.

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