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Recent developments in the evaluation technology of fiber and textiles: Toward the engineered design of textile performance



The engineered design and manufacturing of high-quality fabrics have been targets of textile technology in this century; however, this has not yet been achieved. There are two reasons for this. One is that a method for the objective evaluation of the primary performance of fabric as clothing material was not established until recently; second, the complex mechanical behavior of the textile fabrics consisting of a fiber assembly has not yet been solved theoretically. The primary performance has been evaluated subjectively by fabric hand judgment. Recent achievement in the objective evaluation technology for fabric hand and other performances of fabric has enabled us to move toward the engineered design of fabric quality. After a brief introduction of the objective method, the “ideal fabric” project, which we are now conducting, is introduced. This project aims at the development of an engineered design of high-quality suiting with applying the objective evaluation technology. For future development in engineered design technology, we need basic research on the mechanics of textile structures, and on fiber itself. Fibers are the basic material of textiles. The details of fiber property are required for the advanced research of textile mechanics. Recent progress in the single-fiber measurement technology, we call it “micro-measurement,” is introduced. Finally, the textile technology in the 21st century is forecasted. © 2002 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci 83: 687–702, 2002