Topics: Cellulose, Paper, Waste management Pages: 1 (297 words) Published: November 15, 2013
Lyocell is a newly manufactured cellulose fibre which is used in a wide range of clothing and household textiles due to its very unique properties. These properties include: strong, long lasting, variety of textures (including silky and denim feel), absorbent and wicks moisture. In addition it is very durable, so it can be used in conveyor belts, oil filters, and capacitor separators. Lyocell is made by dissolving wood pulp into amine oxide solvent which changes chemical and surface properties. The solution is then passed through finely machined holes in a steel plate which are very precisely designed; they are called Spinneretes (the same name as silk producing organs in spiders). This Process reforms the cellulose in to fibres which are then chemically treated again, rinsed, dried, lubricated, compressed, combed, and cut before they can be spun in to yarn. It is an incredibly green fibre because firstly the feedstock is wood pulp from managed forests. This is sustainable because the environment is not hugely effected by its manufacture; also animals are protected as their habitats are not being destroyed! Additionally people that manufacture this fibre will benefit economically as they do not have to pay for safe waste disposal- Lyocell is biodegradable and recyclable. Furthermore the manufacture uses a non-toxic, biodegradable solvent in a closed loop process - over 99% is re-used on each cycle of the loop. As a result there are hardly any bi-products, thus there is less waste to harm the environment. Consequently people will not fear living near a factory where Lyocell is made. However the solvent is very expensive costing £15,000 per tonne. On top of that the price has to be expensive too due to the low surface energy which means it cannot be dyed easily with normal dyes that are used.
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