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A study of the thermal properties of single jersey fabrics of cotton, bamboo and cotton/ bamboo blended-yarn vis-a-vis bamboo

fibre presence and yarn count Chidambaram Prakash, Govindan Ramakrishnan & Chandramouli Venkatraman Koushik
Journal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry An International Forum for Thermal Studies ISSN 1388-6150 Volume 110 Number 3 J Therm Anal Calorim (2012) 110:1173-1177 DOI 10.1007/s10973-011-2066-8

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J Therm Anal Calorim (2012) 110:11731177 DOI 10.1007/s10973-011-2066-8

A study of the thermal properties of single jersey fabrics of cotton, bamboo and cotton/bamboo blended-yarn vis-a-vis bamboo bre presence and yarn count
Chidambaram Prakash Govindan Ramakrishnan Chandramouli Venkatraman Koushik

Received: 27 September 2011 / Accepted: 10 November 2011 / Published online: 29 November 2011 miai Kiado , Budapest, Hungary 2011 Akade

Abstract In this study, the thermal properties of 100% cotton, 50/50 cotton/bamboo and 100% bamboo single jersey fabrics with differing yarn linear density are evaluated and analysed. The linear densities of the yarns composing the fabrics are 20s, 25s, 30s Nec and the twist level in the yarns is kept the same. An increasing the presence of bamboo bre in the fabric causes a reduction in fabric thickness and GSM for all linear densities of yarn. Air permeability and water-vapour permeability also increase with increase in bamboo bre content while both thermal conductivity and thermal resistance show a decreasing trend. As the constituent yarn gets ner, fabric air and water-vapour permeability both increase in value while the thermal conductivity falls. Keywords Thermal properties Yarn linear density Air permeability Water-vapour permeability Thermal conductivity Thermal resistance

Introduction Mans standard of living has grown over the years and along with it has come the demand for newer textile
C. Prakash (&) C. V. Koushik Department of Fashion Technology, Sona College of Technology, Salem 636005, India e-mail: C. V. Koushik e-mail: G. Ramakrishnan TIFAC-CORE, Department of Fashion Technology, Kumaraguru College of Technology, Coimbatore 641049, India e-mail:

materials with improved properties and uses. Environmental requirements too have become more stringent than ever before and the traditional petroleum-based synthetic bres do not meet the criteria as they are ecologically unfriendly. Bamboo bre constitutes a recent kind of natural material that has a huge application possibility in the textile eld due to some of its unique properties [1]. For example, it has a unique structure that makes them superior to other natural lignocellulosic bres [2]. In recent years, bamboo bres have attracted great attention as the most abundant renewable biomass materials that can be used in textiles [3] and composite reinforcement [4]. They possess many excellent properties when used as textile materials such as high tenacity, excellent thermal conductivity, resistant to bacteria and high water and perspiration adsorption [5]. Natural bamboo bres have excellent properties and therefore the potential for use in textiles; however, they have not received the attention they deserve owing to their coarse and stiff quality. A chemical method for extraction and modication of natural bamboo bres were used in this article. Regenerated bamboo bre is 100% cellulose, biodegradable and is claimed to be green and environmentally friendly [6]. Blending of different bres is a very common practice in the spinning industry. The blending is done primarily to enhance the properties of resultant bre mix and to optimise the cost of the raw material. Bamboo bre is frequently being used in blends with cotton in the textile industry. Blending is usually done using 50/50 combinations. Since bamboo bre resembles cotton in its cellulosic structure, bamboo together with cotton bre will be compatible in blends. The most important factor that determines the properties of yarn is the type and ratio of bre used in the blend. The


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properties of blended yarn vary according to those of the bres used. Owing to micro-gaps in its structure, bamboo bre has high air permeability and water absorption properties. Bamboo-based fabrics are antibacterial and very soft, with a low amount of pilling and creasing [7]. Fabrics made of bamboo bre have very good physical properties. When compared to cotton fabrics, bamboo fabrics require a lower amount of dye for the same depth of shade. Moreover the colorant is absorbed better and faster than in cotton fabrics and dyed bamboo fabric appears better than dyed cotton fabric [8]. Comfort is one of the most important aspects of clothing, as it strongly affects the choices people make when buying clothes. Knit fabrics provide outstanding comfort qualities and have long been preferred in many types of clothing. In addition to the comfort imparted by the extensible looped structure, knits also provide lightweight warmth, wrinkle resistance and ease of care [9]. That is why knitted fabrics are commonly preferred for sportswear, casual wear and underwear. Lipp-Symonowicz et al. [10] compared bamboo and viscose bres and state that the so-called bamboo bres are in reality man-made viscose bres made from bamboo cellulose and that bamboo bres are comparable to viscose bres in their morphological structure and properties. Okubo et al. [11] analysed the mechanical properties of bamboo bre and reported that the strength of bamboo bre was equivalent to that of glass bre. ndar [12] reported that the friction strength of knitted Du fabrics of 100% bamboo was higher than that of 100% cotton. Chen et al. [13] compared the antibacterial properties of bamboo-viscose (jersey knit) and common woodviscose (jersey knit) and found that the antibacterial properties of bamboo fabrics were signicantly higher than those of common wood-viscose fabric. They reported that the reason for the high antibacterial property of bamboo fabric was that it rapidly absorbs and evaporates water due to its structure and that bacteria cannot survive in such a dry environment. Grineviciute et al. [14] analysed the fabric hand properties of bamboo, cotton and cotton/bamboo fabrics. Raw and nished fabrics gave the same results. Bamboo bre provided better hand properties than cotton fabrics. The researchers concluded that by changing bamboo mixture ratios, fabrics with differing characteristics could be manufactured. Sarkar and Appidi [15] analysed the ultraviolet protection and antimicrobial effects of bamboo fabric and concluded that untreated raw fabric had low as well as insufcient protection and antimicrobial effects. Gun et al. [16] analysed the dimensional and physical properties of plain knitted fabric manufactured from 50/50 bamboo/cotton yarn and compared them with those of 50/50 viscose/cotton and 50/50 modal/cotton blended

fabrics. They reported that fabrics made from these three yarns had a similar appearance. The study analysed the weight per unit area, thickness, bursting strength, air permeability and pilling of the fabrics, and it was found that the weight, thickness and air permeability was independent of the bre type; for example, bamboo/cotton knitted fabric had lower pilling and modal/cotton yarn had higher bursting strength. The comfort provided by clothing depends on several factors, one of which is thermal comfort. It is known that bre type, yarn properties, fabric structure, nishing treatments and clothing conditions are the main factors affecting thermo-physiological comfort. This research study is focused on a study of the thermal comfort parameters of single jersey knitted fabrics made of 20s, 25s and 30s Nec linear density 100% cotton yarn, 100% bamboo yarn and a 50/50 cotton/bamboo blended yarn. The objective was to study any changes in the thermal and construction properties of knitted fabrics as a function of both bamboo bre content and yarn linear density.

Materials and methods Preparation of yarn and fabric samples Sankar-6 cotton was used in the production of the yarn and fabric samples and was obtained from a spinning mill; the mean bre properties were found to be: bre length 27.27 mm, bre length uniformity ratio 49.58%, bre neness 4.52 lg/in, bre maturity 82.53% and trash content 0.19%. The bamboo bre chosen for the study had the following quality characteristics: bre length 36 mm, linear density 155 mtex, moisture regain 11.42% and elongation 21.2%. Table 1 gives the properties of the bres used. Yarns of 100% cotton, 50:50% Bamboo/Cotton, 100% bamboo were produced in three linear densities 20, 25 and 30s Nec using the same twist coefcient (ae = 3.6). The yarns were converted to single jersey fabrics on a Meyer and Cie knitting machine; the details are as follows: Single jersey machine, model MV4, gauge 24 GG, diameter 2300 , speed 30 rpm, feeders 74 and number of needles 1728; the ambient knitting-room atmosphere had a
Table 1 Properties of the bres Fibre Properties Fibre length/mm Fibre neness/dtex Tenacity/cN tex-1 Elongation at break/% Bamboo 36 1.52 19.87 21.11 Cotton 27.27 1.70 33.33 6.1


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Thermal properties of single jersey fabrics of cotton 1175

humidity of 65% and a temperature of 30 2 C. Samples were produced with the same loop-length of 2.7 mm. The knitting process was achieved with constant machine settings and the samples were kept in standard atmosphere for 24 h to allow for relaxation and conditioning. Evaluation of fabric properties The fabric structural properties like weight (mass per unit area) and thickness were evaluated and the results are depicted in Table 2. The thermal properties, namely thermal conductivity, thermal resistance, water-vapour permeability and air permeability, of the fabrics were also evaluated. The Alambeta instrument was used to measure thermal conductivity, fabric thickness and thermal resistance; water-vapour permeability was measured on a Permetest instrument working on simulated skin principle as recommended in ISO 11092; air permeability was measured according to the TS 391 EN ISO 9237 using Tester FX3300. All measurements were performed under the standard atmospheric conditions.

Effect of bamboo bre content in fabric on air permeability Besides the obvious result that fabric air permeability increases with reduction in the linear density of the constituent yarn, Fig. 1 clearly indicates that 100% bamboo fabrics have the highest air permeability value. Moving across the range from 100% cotton through 50/50 cotton/ bamboo and 100% bamboo material, it is clear that irrespective of linear density of the yarn composing the fabric, the air permeability increases with increasing presence of bamboo bre. This result may be attributed to the nding by Majumdar et al. that bamboo-bre yarns have smaller diameters than cotton yarns of the same linear density [17]. The thickness and mass per square meter of the fabrics containing bamboo bre are also therefore

Air permeability/cm3 cm2/s1 600 500 400

Results and discussion The thermal values of knitted fabric consisting of yarn of different linear densities are given in Table 2. Air permeability The air permeability values of the fabrics are depicted in Fig. 1.

300 200 100 0 C1 BC1 20sNe B1 C2 BC2 25sNe B2 C3 BC3 30sNe B3

Fig. 1 Air permeability of the knitted fabrics containing yarn of different linear densities

Table 2 Thermal properties of the single jersey fabrics investigated Linear density 20s Nec Blend ratio Sample no. C1 BC1 B1 C2 BC2 B2 C3 BC3 B3 Fabric thickness/ mm 0.790 0.666 0.598 0.768 0.628 0.529 0.713 0.609 0.519 Weight in unit area/ gm-2 189 184 176 152 132 110 131 108.5 94 Air permeability/ cm3 cm-2/s 101 142 304 191 274 402 265 333 542 Relative water-vapour permeability/% 41.03 42.25 43.01 42.19 45.78 46.04 44.15 46.25 49.28 Thermal conductivity/ Wm/K 9 10-3 50.01 46.04 42.22 48.23 44.23 40.02 46.35 42.10 38.10 Thermal resistance/ m2/KW 9 10-3 20.22 19.04 18.44 21.33 19.97 18.32 23.26 21.98 19.13

100% Cotton 50:50% Bamboo/ Cotton 100% Bamboo

25s Nec

100% Cotton 50:50% Bamboo/ Cotton 100% Bamboo

30s Nec

100% Cotton 50:50% Bamboo/ Cotton 100% Bamboo


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lower than those of the corresponding cotton fabrics (Table 1). The lower hairiness of the bamboo blended yarns may be another contributing factor towards the better air permeability [18]. Effect of constituent yarn linear density on air permeability It is also clear from the above results that fabrics made from yarns of the same bre composition but of ner linear density show higher air permeability for the three types of fabric, with the expected reduction in thickness and fabric mass. Thermal conductivity and thermal resistance Thermal conductivity is an intensive property of a material that indicates its ability to conduct heat. The thermal property of a textile fabric is dependent upon the amount of entrapped air in the fabric structure. The amount of bre per unit area increases and the amount of air layer decreases as the weight increases. It is well known that the thermal conductivity of a textile material is higher than that of the air entrapped in it [19]. Thermal resistance is an indication of how well a material insulates heat. Thermal resistance is a measure of the materials ability to prevent heat from owing through it. Under certain climatic conditions, if the thermal resistance of clothing is small, the heat energy between the wearers skin and the clothing will gradually reduce and result in the wearer experiencing a physiological feeling of cool comfort. Figures 2 and 3 show, respectively, a comparison of the thermal conductivity and thermal resistance results of the fabrics investigated. Effect of bamboo bre content in fabric on thermal conductivity and thermal resistance

Effect of constituent yarn linear density on thermal conductivity and thermal resistance It is borne out from Fig. 2 and the data in Table 2 that the ner the constituent yarn in a fabric the lower is the fabric thermal conductivity. The greater amount of entrapped air in fabrics composed of ner yarn acts as a barrier to thermal transmittance. It is also evident that for any given type of fabric, the thermal resistance of fabric composed of ner yarn is generally higher. Relative water-vapour permeability The water-vapour permeability of a material is highly dependent on the macro-porous structure of the constituent bres. Figure 4 represents the values of water-vapour permeability of the different fabrics. It may be seen that the water-vapour permeability increases with bamboo bre content in the fabric. The water-vapour permeability is also

Thermal conductivity/Wm1/k1 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 C1 BC1 B1 20sNe C2 BC2 B2 25sNe C3 BC3 B3 30sNe

Fig. 2 Thermal conductivity of the fabrics knitted with yarns of different linear densities

Thermal resistance/m2 KW1 103 25

It may be observed that the thermal conductivity and thermal resistance values of 100% bamboo fabrics are lower than those of 100% cotton fabrics for all the constituent yarn linear densities, with the cotton/bamboo blended fabrics showing intermediate values. Though bamboo bre is well known for its comfort properties, the properties are not as good as those for cotton, which would therefore still be regarded as the cooler bre. Moreover the known morphological differences between the two bres and the fact that the bamboo yarn is ner than a cotton yarn of comparable linear density tend to mask the inverse relationship between thermal conductivity and thermal resistance.

20 15 10 5 0 C1 BC1 B1 20sNe C2 BC2 25sNe B2 C3 BC3 30sNe B3

Fig. 3 Thermal resistance of the fabrics knitted with yarns of different linear densities


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Thermal properties of single jersey fabrics of cotton
Relative water vapour permeability/% 60 50 40 30

1177 management of Sona College of Technology for permission to use the laboratory facilities and lastly to the Textile Research Centre, TIFACCORE in Textile Technology and Machinery, of Kumaraguru College of Technology, Coimbatore, India for test all the samples in their advanced manufacturing laboratory.

20 10 0 C1 BC1 20sNe B1 C2 BC2 25sNe B2 C3 BC3 30sNe B3

Fig. 4 Relative water-vapour permeability of fabrics made from yarns of different linear densities

higher for the fabrics made from ner yarns. It was observed earlier that yarns with bamboo bre tend to be smaller in diameter. The greater interstitial spaces in the fabric arising as a result would contribute to higher watervapour permeability. The water-vapour transmission due to diffusion may also be higher for the bamboo fabrics as the moisture regain of bamboo bre is higher than that of cotton.

Conclusions The thermal properties of single jersey fabrics made from yarns of 100% cotton, 100% bamboo and 50:50% bamboo/ cotton were investigated in this study. It was found in general that the thermal conductivity, thermal resistance, air permeability and relative water-vapour permeability values of the fabrics depend on bre content in the fabric and the linear density of the constituent yarns. The presence of bamboo bre in the fabric is found to affect the thermal properties. Fabric air permeability and relative watervapour permeability were found to be highest for 100% bamboo fabric and the lowest for 100% cotton fabric. As expected, fabrics with ner yarns showed higher air and water-vapour permeability. The thermal conductivity and thermal resistance properties of 100% bamboo fabric are lower than those of 100% cotton fabric, the extent of reduction increasing with increasing bamboo bre in the fabric. The ner the yarn in the fabric, the lower is the thermal conductivity and higher the thermal resistance.

Acknowledgements The authors would like to express their sincere thanks to B. Amarnath, V. Ramesh kumar, P. Sanjeevraj and A. Sasikumar for their assistance in the experimental part, to the

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