Tencel Fiber | Manufacturing Process of Tencel Fiber

Tencel Fiber:
Tencel is a natural, manmade, biodegradable fibre which made from wood pulp.

 Properties of Tencel Fiber:
  1. The actual degree of polymerization in the Tencel fibres is higher than for standard viscose, modal (HWM) or polynosics.
  2. Tencel fibres have excellent wet strength and wet modulus. The high wet modulus of the fibre is an important attribute as it imparts Tencel fabrics with very low potential shrinkage in wet state.
  3. The fibre is round in cross-section and has a natural high lustre.
  4. 100% biodegradable.
  5. Tencel has a very high absorption capability, a unique nano-fibril structure and a very smooth surface.
Manufacturing Process of Tencel Fiber:
Tencel fibre is a solvent spun fibre using amine oxide (MMNO) as the solvent. In the process, amine oxide is heated and is then used to dissolve wood pulp. A very clear but very viscous solution is obtained which is filtered and then spun into a bath containing a dilute aqueous solution of solvent. The bath removes the amine oxide from the fibres. The fibres are then washed and dried. The removed solvent is reclaimed for further use.

Tencel Solvent Spinning Process Flow Chart:
Flow chart of tencel solvent spinning
Advantages of Tencel Fiber:
Eco Print:

Made from the natural cellulose found in wood pulp. The fiber is economical in its use of energy and natural resources, and is fully biodegradable.

Moisture Absorbent:

This fibre has natural breathability and 50% greater moisture absorption than cotton.

Heat Capacity and Thermoregulation:

Water has a high heat capacity. Therefore, fibers which contain water will also have a high heat capacity. This can be used to help the human body’s temperature regulation. On the water vapor absorption isotherm we have seen that tencel fire always contains water.

Anti-bacterial:

Due to its moisture management, Tencel is also anti-bacterial. Tencel has an extremely smooth, soft surface that drapes beautifully to flatter every figure.

Great for Sensitive Skin:

Tencel’s smooth fibre surface feels soft and supple against the skin and its incredible wicking abilities keep the skin dry, making tencel a great fabric for sensitive skin. Fibers with poor water absorption capacity result in textiles which cling to the skin when they are wet. Wet skin is much more sensible to irritation than dry skin. The coarseness, the stiffness and the surface character of the fibers will also have an impact on the skin’s sensory perception.

Both cotton and wool have rather good water absorbency, however they have a rather rough fiber surface. Tencel combines good water absorbency with a smooth fiber surface which makes it a fiber which is very gentle to the skin.

Durable:

This super fibre can hold up to a beating when both we and dry, and is most conveniently resistant to wrinkles.

Disadvantage of Tencel Fiber:
  1. Tencel will shrink (approx. 3%) after its first washing but retain its shape after that.
  2. Tencel is more expensive than most eco fabric alternatives.
Fibrillation:
One of the properties of Tencel is its potential to fibrilate. Fibrillation is where the wet fiber, through abrasive action, develops micro-fibrils (or tiny fibers) on its surface. By manipulating or controlling fibrillation, a variety of different fabric finishes may be achieved.

The surface fibers of standard Tencel are fibrillated to produce a luxurious, soft-touch fabric with a peachskin surface. This is the usual recognized quality of the fiber.

A more recently developed fiber, Tencel A100, has a non-fibrillated surface finish. Developed primarily for the knitwear market, A100 has a subtle surface lustre, and excellent print definition and high tear and burst strength for woven and knitted fabrics. A100 also enhances laundering performance and shape retention of garments using this fiber. 

 A Comparison of Tencel Fiber Properties:
Parameter
Tencel
Polyester
Cotton
Viscose
Linear density(dtex)
1.7
1.7
-
1.7
Tenacity (cN/tex)

42-44
42-52
23-25
23-25
Elongation (%)

14-16
25-35
7-9
20-25
Wet tenacity (cN/tex)
37-41
42-52
27-31
10-12
Wet Elongation (%)
16-18
25-35
12-14
25-30
Wet modulus {@5% extension}(cN/tex)
270
210
100
50
Water imbibitions (%)
65
3
50
90

Reference:
  1. Manufactured fibre technology by V.B. GUPTA AND V.K. KOTHARI.
  2. Schuster K.C., Firgo H., Haussmann F., Männer J., Home Textiles with Feel Good Factor Derived From Wood, Lenzinger Berichte, 83 (2004), pp. 111–116. 
Author of This Article:  

MD. JASIMUDDIN MANDAL
COLLEGE: GOVT. COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING AND TEXTILE TECHNOLOGY, SERAMPORE (UNDER WEST BENGAL UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY)
Email ID: jasimmandal@gmail.com
Contact: +8820662240








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