Cellulose fibre, commonly known as viscose, is a synthetic fibre obtained from a natural polymer – cellulose. Cellulose is separated from vegetal raw materials through separating the substances accompanying cellulose in plants. Therefore, the name cellulose designates a certain chemical compound. Meanwhile, the raw material that the cellulose fibre or paper factory receives to process, is – from a chemical point of view – not cellulose, because it contains a number of additives such as lignin, wax, fat, mineral ingredients and others. It is called cellulose dope or pulp.
Sources of obtaining cellulose:
- cotton – c. 91%
- wood – c. 50%
- straw, reed – c. 30%
Production of cellulose fibres is based on two methods: direct with the use of a solvent and a derivative of cellulose. The latter is made by activating cellulose, melting it and pumping it into a coagulation bath, where pure cellulose is regenerated.
Cellulose fibres remain an important material for the textile industry. 90% of the overall amount of cellulose fibres produced are viscose fibres. Due to ecological (a large amount of harmful waste, gases and others) and economic considerations, an alternative method of producing cellulose fibres is constantly sought for.
- The most serious alternative for over-a-hundred-year-old viscose production technology, characterised by low elasticity and high strain on the environment, mainly due to emission of carbon disulphide, hydrogen sulphide and sulphur dioxide, as well as due to high amount of zinc disposed of into sewage.
- This technology is a contiguous, highly-effective and 100% eco-friendly process, compliant with EU’s and 21st century’s requirements. Fibres produced using this technology first appeared on the market in 1992 as a product of Courtaulds from Mobil (Alabama, USA).
- The base for the Lyocell fibre production technology is the use of N-Methylmorpholine N-oxide as a direct organic solvent.
From the environmental point of view, the advantage of the NMMO technology over the traditional is due to the fact that the NMMO solvent can be recovered in 98-99,5% and returned to circulation.
Viscose fibres are characterised by:
- high hygroscopy,
- soft feel,
- low resistance to moisture,
- good heat conductivity,
- good moisture transport – dries faster than cotton.
Cellulose fibres can be manufactured in staple or continuous form. Continuous fibres (viscose silk) resemble real silk and due to their softness, gloss and good hygienic qualities can make its decent replacement. In contrast to silk, they have higher resistance to UV radiation, but lower tenacity.
Viscose can be used for:
- hygiene products,
- home cleaning supplies,
- textile – staple and continuous yarns
- woven fabrics,
- knitted fabrics,
- interior design,
- specialised clothing, if mixed with appropriate additives.
Viscose fibre proves useful in home cleaning supplies due to its high sorption qualities. For that reason, it is perfect for articles such as floor cloths, kitchen cloths, towels, etc. This type of products are, what is called, non-woven fabric – fibres are bonded together by their natural bonding capabilities and may be reinforced by needle punching or stitching. Spunlacing or traditional needlepunching makes the fibres better mixed and bonded as well as the fleece thinner (it resembles cotton wool or thermal insulation in jackets).
Please check our offer and temporary products for viscose. Also, do not hesitate to contact us, in case you have any questions.