Tensile properties of cotton treated with alkali metal hydroxides



The tenacity of cotton fibers treated without tension with 5N KOH at 0°C or 21°C is greater than that of fibers treated with either 5N LiOH or NaOH. In studying the effect of changes in fine structure on the strength of cotton fibers, we suggest that strength should be given as breaking load rather than as tenacity. Evidence is given indicating that crystallite length is an important factor and should be considered with degree of crystallinity and degree of orientation when explaining the increase in breaking load of cotton fibers brought about by treatment with 5N alkali metal hydroxides.