Flax fiber or Linen is a cellulosic textile fiber. In fact, it collects from the flax plant. Flax fiber is a natural fiber and it is comparatively more valuable than cotton fiber. It is a soft and cool fiber for this reason it is comfortable to wear. Its strength is more than cotton fiber and its value is about 2 or 3 times that of cotton fiber. Moreover, flax fiber occupied the second position after Rame in regards to strength. The flax fiber fabric is also attractive and fashionable. Surely, to know about fiber, it is important to know about its physical and chemical properties. For this reason, I like to illustrate the physical and chemical properties of flax fiber.
Physical Properties of Flax Fiber:
Following are the physical properties of Flax fiber. They are:
- Color: The color of flax fiber is yellowish to grey.
- Length: Its length is 18 to 30 inch.
- Tensile Strength: Flax is a strong fiber. It has a tenacity of 5.5 to 6.5 gm/den. The strength is greater than cotton fiber.
- Elongation at break: Flax fiber does not stress easily. It has an elongation at break of 2.7 to 3.5 %.
- Elastic Recovery: Flax fiber has not enough elastic recovery properties like cotton fiber.
- Specific Gravity: Specific gravity of flax fiber is 1.50.
- Moisture Regain (MR %): Standard moisture regain is 10 to 12%.
- Effect of Heat: Flax fiber has an excellent resistance to degradation by heat. It is less affected than cotton fiber by the heat.
- Effect of Sun Light: Flax fiber do not affects by the sun light as like others fiber. It has enough ability to protect sun light.
- Resiliency: Very poor resiliency property.
- Lusture: It is brighter than cotton fiber and it is slightly silky.
Chemical Properties of Flax Fiber:
Flax fiber is a natural cellulosic fiber and it has some chemical properties. The following are the chemical properties of flax fiber. They are:
- Effect of Acids: Flax fiber damage by highly densified acids but low dense acids does not affect if it is wash instantly after application of acids.
- Effects of Alkalis: Flax fiber has an excellent resistance to alkalis. It does not affected by the strong alkalis.
- Effects of Bleaching Agents: Cool chlorine and hypo-chlorine bleaching agent does not affect the flax fiber properties.
- Effect of Organic Solvent: Flax fiber has high resistance to normal cleaning solvents.
- Effects of Insects: Flax fiber does not attacked by moth-grubs or beetles.
- Effect of Micro Organism: Fungi and bacteria attack to flax fiber . Mildews will feed on linen fabric, rotting and weakling the materials. Mildews and bacteria will flourish on linen under hot and humid condition. They can be protected by impregnation with certain types of chemicals. Copper Nepthenate is one of the chemical.
- Dyes: It is not suitable to dye. But it can be dye by direct dyes and vat dyes.
Lastly, Flax fiber is the oldest fiber and it is used to make different types of fabrics which is used for various types decorative purposes.