Nonalkali swelling solutions for regenerated cellulose
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Swelling of regenerated cellulose in nonalkali aqueous solutions containing lithium chloride and urea (LiCl/urea/water) was examined. The effect of solution concentration on fiber properties was studied using microscopy, weight gain (swelling), and mechanical strength tests. The regenerated cellulose samples included lyocell fibers, viscose fibers, and fibers spun from alkali. The change in the mechanical properties of treated fibers was smaller than that of fibers treated with alkali to the same level of swelling. The degree of swelling in these solutions was related to the propensity for the formation of Li–cellulose coordination complexes, and these were enhanced by reductions in both urea and water content.
KeywordsCellulose Fibers Swelling mechanism LiCl Urea Lyocell Viscose
The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Community’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement no. 214015. The authors gratefully acknowledge Versuchsanstalt-Textil-Dornbirn for use of their facilities. They are also grateful to Ms. Sandra Köppel and Dr. Eduard Burtscher for assistance during nitrogen analysis.
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