Thesis Details

Thesis Title: Effects of fiber manufacturing conditions and amount of recycled resin on melt spun polyester fiber properties and morphology
Thesis Author: Victoria Cobb
Abstract: Industrial solid waste disposal has become a serious problem in most industrialized nations. Increasing level of solid waste combined with reduced waste management alternatives have heightened interest in recycling, especially in the plastics sector. Polyester accounts for 75 % of the synthetic fibers produced in the world, and is easily recycled into textile fibers using current direct remelting and chemical regeneration technologies. There has been little research to determine how parameters such as blend level, denier, and recycling method affect morphology, physical properties, and dye uptake of textile fibers. This thesis investigated these relationships to fill in the knowledge gap that impedes the wide-scale use of recycled polymers in textile applications. To determine the effects of blend level, denier and recycling method, eighteen fiber conditions were produced, representing all variable combinations. Fibers wert~ subjected to a variety of tests to determine molecular weight, thermal properties, morphological properties, physical properties and dyeing behavior. While this study raised many more questions than it answered, the following general conclusions were made: 1. No loss of strength was observed in fibers with addition of the recycled polymers used in this research. 2. Fibers containing recycled polyester exhibited an increased sensitivity to oxidative degradation. 3. Fibers containing recycled polyester dyed darker. Based on this research, it is recommended that further study be conducted in a more controlled spinning environment.