Corn is used; not just for eating but the fibres acquired from it is also used to manufacture pretty garments. This is a natural renewable fibre and does not come from petro chemicals. Dextrose, a material extracted from corn amylum is fermented to make lactic acid. Water from this substance is then removed and is converted into a fibre form. A recent innovation in the process of fermenting glucose which is obtained from corn has reduced the manufacturing costs for making lactic acids considerably. Poly Lactic Acid (PLA) is derived from dextrose and the final product made from this is called natural plastic. Corn fibres are initially knit into tubes. Then they are flattened and made into a slightly stretchy ribbon. The process of extracting corn fibres from polymers is called melt spinning. PLA has a wide range of applications like manufacturing clothing, diapers, interior exterior furnishings, weaving carpets and mattresses, upholstery, and geotextile applications. PLA uses approximately 30 percent less fossil fuel required to manufacture conventional fibres. Thus it proves to be eco friendly as well.
Corn fibre has similar characteristics of Polyester Staple Fibre endowed with the luster of silk. Corn fibre fabrics offer the comfort of cotton, silk etc. These fibres are easily dyeable and can be dyed with dispersion dyes under normal pressure. After dyeing, many small holes can be found on the side surface. This enables the fabric to absorb moisture, quick dry, and to breathe freely. They also have the easy to care quality of synthetics. They are unaffected by UV light. Corn fibre fabrics posses excellent resiliency, crease retention and wicking as compared with other natural fibres. These fabrics are being adored for their drape, silky feel, long-lasting and moisture properties. They are decomposable and can be recycled into fertilizers easily. Its CO2 and CO emission while burning is very low. It has a high melting point, and high crystallization degree. It is a kind of yogurt polymer. Corn knitted fabrics will not stimulate the skin, and hence is non-allergic in nature. It offers good heat resistance and elasticity.
Corn fibres can be spun into pure yarn and also with an effective blend of cotton, wool, viscose and other chemical fibres. The fibres can be processed into staple fibre, multifilament and monofilament. It provides low index of refraction, which provides excellent color characteristics to the fabric. It is antimicrobial and biodegradable as well.
Clothing with high tech nature which is environmentally friendly is the focus of the textile industries currently. Despite of the fact that corn fibres are rigid and frail in nature, these fabrics offer a unique combination of options to consumers and have attracted much attention. They give the comfort of natural fabrics such as cotton, silk and wool, and also prove to be a performance wear. This will serve as an environmentally friendly alternative to cotton. At present, it is famous in Europe and US and is expected to be a globally demanded textile product in the years to come.
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