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Aussie Merino wool in focus

Mar '07
What is it about Australian Merino wool that makes it tough enough to sail the rough southern oceans of Australia's coast in the world famous Sydney-to-Hobart yacht race? How does it survive the hostile conditions of mountain climbing?

Where cotton fibre falls apart after 3,000 bends, and silk risks tearing at only 2,000, Merino wool can stand up to 20,000 flexures before breakage occurs. This means it retains its shape and appearance far longer than many other fibres.

Merino wool is a highly complex structure comprising of two main parts. The first is a rigid and elastic section which makes up about 30 per cent of the fibre volume.

The second is a tough-when-dry, soft-when-wet matrix phase allowing the wool to react with the moisture in the atmosphere. This provides a resilient fibre in almost all conditions.

The reaction with moisture is key to Merino wool. When saturated, it can stretch up to 30 per cent without damage and still retain its shape once returned to normal.

At a microscopic level, Australian Merino wool has the distinctive ability to change its elastic elements from a helix (spiral) to sheet (flat) structure, a process that can be repeated as many times as the weather.

All these characteristics make Australian Merino wool one of the best fibres in the world for creating quality clothing.

Wool Is Best

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