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Polyester Fiber and its uses

Properties and application of Polyester Fibers and Polyester Yarn

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Polyester fibers, the synthetic fibers, are long-chain polymers derived from coal, air, water, and petroleum. They are formed through a chemical reaction between an acid and alcohol. Polyester is often blended with other fibers like cotton to get the best of both worlds.

Properties of Polyester

Polyester can be used for fashionable dresses, but it is most admired for its ability to resist wrinkling and for its easy washability. Its toughness makes it a frequent choice for children’s wear. Polyester is often blended with other fibers like cotton to get the best of both worlds.

Strength

  • Resists abrasion (but can “pill”)
  • Very resilient (springs back into shape)
  • Resist wrinkling
  • Very high heat can “melt” the fabric
  • The right amount of heat can be used to permanently “heat set” a crease or pleat
  • Easy to wash and wear
  • Does not absorb water (can be uncomfortable when worn next to the skin in warm weather unless loosely woven)
  • Dries quickly
  • Attracts static electricity which also attracts dirt and lint
  • Although they do NOT absorb water, they DO absorb oil and grease. This means synthetics
  • resist soiling, but once an oil-based stain soaks in, it can be difficult to clean.
  • Strong fiber (but nylon is stronger)
  • Often blended with cotton or even wool to add crease resistance
  • Polyester does not absorb water, but it can be produced in such a way (as in polypropylene and microfibers) as to “wick” water away from the skin
  • Polyester fiber is relatively strong and more durable than other fibers.
  • High tenacity – PET polyester filaments used for industrial purpose
  • Abrasion resistance of polyester fiber is being exceeded only by nylon fibers
  • The strength, abrasive nature, and stability make polyester very suitable for sewing thread where adequate tension is ensured without losing the shape of the garment.
  • PET polyester is superior in all regards to strength as compared to PCDT
  • Elasticity – polyester does not shape as it has a low degree of elasticity. (PCDT>PET; elasticity)
  • Resilience – polyester fiber has a high degree of resilience. it resists wrinkling when dry and even when wet
  • Drapibility – polyester yarns are more flexible and softer thereby fabric has good draping quality
  • Heat conductivity – polyester fabric has average heat polyester filament fiber is round and when converted into fabric it has fewer air spaces and less insulation.
  • Polyester fabric is less warm as compared to acrylic, silk, and wool and more as compared to cotton, linen, and rayon
  • Absorbency – polyester is one of the least absorbent fibers. It has advantages fiber
    • it will dry rapidly(suited for water-repellant purposes)
    • It does not stain easily
    • easy to clean and dry

Weakness

  • it is uncomfortable in humid weather as it does not absorb perspiration
  • Shrinkage – once set polyester fabric has excellent dimensional stability
  • Resistant to insects – polyester is detestable to insects
  • Affinity for dyes – dye friendly polyester gives a variety of colors to the fabric
  • Effect of bleaching – polyester fabric can be easily bleached owing to good resistance to deterioration
  • Effect of heat – polyester fabric get sticky at 227-242 centigrade so ironing should be done at a lower temperature
  • Effect of light – polyester fabric has resistance to degradation This quality is suited for use as curtains.
  • Effect of chemical – polyester fiber has resistance to medium acid-base treatment

Uses Of Polyester

Polyester is the choice of fiber and fabric for many industries. It can be applied to a wide variety of useful purposes.

Use of polyester in garments

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Polyester is used in the manufacturing of all kinds of clothes and home furnishings like bedspreads, sheets, pillows, furniture, carpets, and even curtains. The disco clothing of the 70s with all its jazz and flash was made of polyester.

  • Hydrophobic nature: High tenacity and good durability make polyester the choice of fabric for high-stress outdoor use. Polyester is also a strong fiber that is hydrophobic in nature. It is thus ideal for clothing to be used in wet and damp environments. The fabric is also coated with a water-resistant finish and further intensifies the hydrophobic nature.
  • Being the most heavily recycled polymer worldwide, it is also used by climbers. Climbing suits, parkas, sleeping bags, and other outdoor gear are using the new insulating polyester fiberfill products. One can also do winter windsurfing wearing dry suits lined with polyester fleece.
  • Creating insulation: By creating hollow fibers it is also possible to build insulation into the polyester fiber. Air is trapped inside the fiber, which is then warmed by the heat of the body. This keeps the body warm in cold weather. Another method to build insulation is to use crimped polyester in a fiberfill. The crimp helps keep the warm air in. Polyester is an ideal fabric for this kind of insulation because it retains its shape. Cotton and wool tend to flatten over a period of time and lose the warming effect.
  • Wrinkle-resistant: Polyester is also wrinkle-resistant and is used very often in everyday clothing like pants, shirts, tops, skirts, and suits. Used either by itself or as a blend, it is also stain-resistant and hence very popular.

Industrial uses of polyester

While clothing used to be the most popular use of polyester and which made it a household name worldwide, there are many other uses polyester is put to.

PET: The most common use of polyester today is to make plastic bottles that store our much-beloved beverages. Shatterproof and cheap these bottles are an absolute boon to the beverages industry.

Mylar: An unusual and little-known use of polyester is in the manufacturing of balloons. Not the rubber kind that you use for water balloons but the really pretty decorated ones that are gifted on special occasions. These are made of Mylar – a kind of polyester film manufactured by DuPont. The balloons are made of a composite of Mylar and aluminum foil.

Miscellaneous: Polyester is also used to manufacture high-strength ropes, thread, hoses, sails, floppy disk liners, power belting, and much more in industries.

Future of Polyester

Following its introduction to the United States in 1951, polyester quickly became the country’s fastest-growing fiber. Easy care of the permanent press fabric made polyester double knits extremely popular in the late 1960s. However, polyester has suffered an “image problem” since that time, and clothes made out of polyester were often devalued and even ridiculed. Several new forms of polyester introduced in the early 1990s may help revitalize the image of polyester.

A new form of polyester fiber, called microfiber, was introduced to the public in 1991. More luxurious and versatile than traditional polyester, microfiber fabrics are difficult to tell apart from silk fabrics. Clothing designers such as Mary McFadden have created a line of clothes using this new form of polyester. Textile researchers at North Carolina State University are developing a form of polyester that may be as strong as Kevlar, a super fiber material used to make bulletproof vests. This type of polyester may eventually be used as composite materials for cars and airplanes. Even Today Polyester has considered the most useful fiber in the textile and apparel sector and its growth rate of it keeps on improving.

The fabrics made from polyester fiber have good elasticity, wrinkle resistance, shape retention, excellent wash-and-wear performance and durability, and so on so it is widely used in all kinds of apparel fabrics. However, because polyester fiber is poor in moisture absorption, its clothing makes the wearer feel hot and sticky, produces static electricity easily which results in clothing absorbing dust and clinging to the body, and has poor comfort.

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5 Comments
  1. Lewis Mirra says

    It’s hard to seek out knowledgeable individuals on this subject, however you sound like you recognize what you’re talking about! Thanks

  2. Constance G says

    polyester is one of the most harmful fabrics and uses alot of water even if it is cheap is horrible for the environment and can cause interference with hormones and can cause cancer so watch how much of it you use and do you know how much water goes into making 1 polyester t-shirt litres and litres and litres of dyed water then it goes into the rivers and Kills the fish we eat the fish and it can be very harmful to our systems that is why it is better to use natural dyes and organic fabric like pinatex cotton ‘silk bamboo silk pineapple fabric pretty much anything but polyester

  3. RiseTextile says

    Polyester can always be the best option for fashion as well as home decor. You have described here so well. Few thing I did not know before I read this article. I am thankful that I came across this site. I gained knowledge on polyester. Nowadays www.risetextile.com/custom-fabric-printing/polyester-fabric-printingdigital printing on polyester fabric became most popular because of its unique characteristics. Thank you so much for sharing.

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