A new method of evaluating the fineness and residual gum content of hemp fibres
conference contributionposted on 2002-01-01, 00:00 authored by Rafael Beltran, Christopher HurrenChristopher Hurren, Akif KaynakAkif Kaynak, Xungai Wang
The demand for eco-friendly apparel and technical textiles has led to a resurgence of interests in bast fibres such as hemp. The lack of fast and objective evaluation of the quality attributes of bast fibres has been a major barrier to the advancement of the bast fibre industry. One of the most important quality attributes of a fibre is its fineness. For bast fibres, the fibre fineness measurement can also reflect the degree of fibre separation during retting or degumming. The traditional method of evaluating the fineness and residual gum content of bast fibres is a very tedious process. In this paper, degummed hemp fibres have been measured for fineness on an Optical Fibre Diameter Analyser (OFDA), and the results have been co-related with the residual gum content in the fibre samples. Since hemp fibres do not have a circular cross section, it is the width of the fibre that gets measured by the OFDA instrument, and this width has been used as an indication of the fibre fineness in this paper. The findings from this study suggest that the optical method can provide a fast and objective way of evaluating the fineness of hemp fibres, and that there is a good correlation between the fibre „width‟ measurement and the residual gum content.