Type: Man-made fibres | Classification: Organic | Sub-classification: Synthetic fibre

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Fibre structure & physical properties

Fibre composition:


Diameter: Can be made to any diameter
Very fine: < 10 μm, Fine: < 20 μm, Medium: 20-50 μm, Course: > 50 μm

Length: Filament

Staple length: continuous filament
short < 26 mm, medium 26-29 mm, long: 30-38 mm, extra long: 39 mm and over

Natural fibre colour: White or nearly white colour

Microscopic Images (Cross sectional and SEM):

Image source: Caption:

Soft, smooth, dog bone cross section shape

(CC) Sebastian Nordstrom
(CC) Sebastian Nordstrom
(CC) Sebastian Nordstrom
(CC) Sebastian Nordstrom


A copolymer with soft and hard segment. Rubber-like elasticity is given by combining a soft segment which gives polymer elongation and a hard segment which gives polymer strength.

Fibre properties (Mechanical, Chemical and Thermal)

Mechanical Properties

Tensile strength (cN/dtex) :

Chemical Properties

Hydrophobicity: Hydrophobic

Moisture regain (%): 0%

Thermal Properties

Flammability: Melt, fuse and burn without shrinking away from the flame. They leave a soft fluffy, black ash and give off an acrid odour.

Sustainability considerations

End uses

Apparel: form fitting textiles, e.g leggings, swimwear, sportswear because of its high elasticity (stretching up to five times its length)


Materials using this fibre

Additional resources

Taylor MA, 2004. Technology of Textile Properties. Third edition. Forbes Publications, London, UK.

Zhong Z and Xiao C, 2008. Fabric composition and testing. In: Fabric Testing. Ed: Hu, J. Woodhead Publishing Limited, Cambridge, UK.

ISO/TR 11827:2012 Textiles — Composition testing — Identification of fibres.

Houck, Max M. Identification of Textile Fibers. Cambridge : Boca Raton: Woodhead Pub. in Association with The Textile Institute ; CRC, 2009. Print.