The Science of Fashion Show - California State University

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Transcript The Science of Fashion Show - California State University

A Closer Look at What You Are Wearing
2012 Super STEM Festival
California State University San Marcos
 The oldest fabric
ever found is dated
at 34,000 years old.
It was found in the
Republic of Georgia,
and it appears to
have been dyed.
 The material is flax.
 Flax, Jute, and Hemp (bast) fibers come from the
phloem of plants – stronger than cotton. Often used
for ropes, paper, burlap, etc.
 Flax-based material = LINEN
 Made from a molecule called CELLULOSE.
Made from repeating glucose monomers.
Flax fibers are made from multiple cells and contain
significant amounts of hemicellulose, protein, waxes, and
acids in addition to the cellulose polymer.
Cotton fibers come from a single cell and have over 94%
cellulose along with these other materials.
 Cellulose from the
seed coat of the
cotton plant.
 Solvents and mild
bases are used to
remove unwanted
materials and the
cotton fiber is
unwound and spun
into thread.
The Look and Feel…
and Technology of Cotton
Separating the cotton from the seed was painstaking
work until the invention of the cotton gin by Eli
Whitney in 1793. Versions of the cotton gin are still
used today.
 Today’s technological
advances with cotton are all
about genetic modification
to add pest resistance.
 80% less pesticide used
 73% of US cotton crops
 Wool fibers are made of animal
hair, principally from sheep.
Each hair is a complex structure
made up of layers of protein
molecules, called KERATIN.
Cloth made from wool has
excellent insulating properties
and resists wrinkling. Wool
fibers can be stretched, dyed,
and woven.
 For centuries, sheep have been bred
for their wool-bearing qualities.
Production of woolen fabrics is a
highly technical process. In its
simplest form, sheep are sheared
and the wool sorted and cleaned,
then the wool is carded to straighten
the fibers, spun into thin cords, and
woven into fabrics.
 Each step in this process has been
refined to provide a high-quality
product of vast commercial
 Cashmere is weaker than wool but is luxurious with an
extraordinary soft, and resilient fibre that is receptive to
dyes. This expensive fibre is combed once a year from the
bellies of the cashmere goat. These goats live mostly in
the mountains of Tibet, Nepal and Pakistan.
 Cashmere originally came to be known to the larger world
through the beautiful handmade shawls produced in
Kashmir, India beginning in the fifteenth century.
 Silk, the common name of b-Keratin, is the solidified
fluid excreted by a number of insects and spiders, the
most valuable being the exudent of the silkworm, the
caterpillar of the silk moth. It is a polypeptide made
largely from glycine, alanine, and smaller amounts of
other amino acids.
 First prepared in ancient China, silk fabric was expensive,
luxurious, and soft; its popularity led to the development
of a trade route known as the Silk Road leading from Asia
to Europe. Early American entrepreneurs such as
Benjamin Franklin promoted the silk industry in the
Velvet: Same molecules,
different weave
 Velvet can be made from any other type of
thread. It is woven together with 2
thicknesses of thread, then cut apart to
create the soft pile.
 Silk velvet was the original, but cotton velvet
is more popular due to expense. Silk velvet
can cost over $100/yd!
Rayon: Our 1st Synthetic Fabric
 Made from wood or cotton pulp and was first known as
artificial silk.
 The Swiss chemist, Georges Audemars invented the first
crude artificial silk around 1855, by dipping a needle into
liquid mulberry bark pulp and gummy rubber to make
threads. The method was too slow to be practical.
 In 1884, a French chemist, Hilaire de Charbonnet,
Comte de Chardonnay, patented an artificial silk that
was a nitrocellulose-based fabric known as Chardonnay
silk." Pretty but very flammable, it was removed from
the market.
Rayon: Our 1st Synthetic Fabric
 In 1894, British inventors, Charles Cross, Edward
Bevan, and Clayton Beadle, patented a safe a practical
method of making artificial silk that came to be
known as viscose rayon. Avtex Fibers Incorporated first
commercially produced artificial silk or rayon in 1910
in the United States. The term "rayon" was first used in
 Rayon is neither natural nor all man-made – it involves
breaking cotton fiber or wood pulp down and then
reconstituting the product as thread. “Acetate” is a
type of rayon made from cellulose acetate.
 DuPont™ Neoprene polychloroprene is an extremely
versatile synthetic rubber with more than 75 years of
proven performance in a broad industry spectrum. It
was originally developed as an oil-resistant substitute
for natural rubber.
Nylon 6,6
Nylon 6,6
By 1934, Wallace Carothers had made significant steps
toward creating a synthetic silk by combining the
chemicals amine, hexamethylene diamine and adipic
acid to create a new fiber formed by the polymerizing
process and known as a condensation reaction. In a
condensation reaction, individual molecules join with
water as a byproduct.
Nylon 6,6
Introduced at the World’s Fair in 1939, DuPont sold 64
million pairs of stockings in the first year on the
market. That same year, nylon appeared in the movie,
The Wizard of Oz, where it was used to create the
tornado that carried Dorothy to the Emerald City.
Dacron (Polyester)
Dacron Polyester is a very versatile fiber.
 Generally low priced
 A wide range of fiber sizes (deniers) for fabric development.
 Quick-drying and mildew resistant.
 Good abrasion resistance.
 More resistant to stretching and shrinking than nylon.
 Relatively hydrophobic, more so than nylon fabrics.
 Excellent retention of properties at very low temp conditions.
 Resistant to degradation in acidic environments (pH<7.0).
 Significant strength degradation over time with extended UV
Dacron (Polyester)
Repeated condensation reactions produce
polyethyleneterephthalate (PETE)
 Very tiny polyester
fibers can be
produced – or nylon
or other synthetic
•The strands that make up microfiber fabric measure less than 1 denier, or about half
as thick as a strand ofsilk. Some microfiber fabrics use strands that are only 10
microns in diameter, or about one-tenth as thick as a human hair.
•Microfiber fabric is lightweight, highly absorbent and does not stain or wrinkle easily.
Microfiber fabrics that are electrostatically charged can pick up small particles, such
as dust, without the use of cleaning solvents, and leave no lint behind.
•Microfiber fabrics should be washed in detergent that is free of oils, soaps and fabric
softeners, since the fabric can soak up these additives, causing it to retain odors.
 Spandex or elastane is a synthetic fiber known for its
exceptional elasticity. It is strong, but less durable than
its major non-synthetic competitor, natural Latex. It is
a polyurethane-polyurea(means ester and amide)
copolymer that was developed in 1959.
 Name comes from an anagram of EXPANDS.
 Nomex® fiber is a member of the aramid family of
fibers, and is similar in appearance to nylon. Fabrics
woven of Nomex® fibers are used in applications
requiring good textile properties, good dimensional
stability and excellent heat resistance. They are used in
coated industrial fabrics, aerospace fabrics, electrical
insulation, hot-gas filter bags, protective clothing, and
high temperature hoses.
 Fabrics woven of Kevlar® aramid fiber combine very
high strenth-to-weight properties with excellent
abrasion and cut resistance.
 Used in weave in ballistic-resistant vests, as films in
sailcloths, and as a basis for many carbon-fiber