41(4) 292–308 ! The Author(s) 2011
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DOI: 10.1177/1528083711416394 jit.sagepub.com
Studies on compression properties of polyester needle-punched nonwoven fabrics under dry and wet conditions
Sanjoy Debnath1 and M Madhusoothanan2
In this article, the effects of fabric weight, fiber cross-sectional shapes (round, hollow, and trilobal), and presence of reinforcing material on the compression properties (initial thickness, percentage compression, percentage thickness loss, and percentage compression resilience) under dry and wet conditions of polyester needle-punched industrial nonwoven fabrics are presented. It has been found that initial thickness of the fabric decreases under wet condition for both with and without reinforcing materials. The percentage thickness loss values are higher under wet condition in case of samples with reinforcing material compared to samples without reinforcing material. In the presence of reinforcing material, the trilobal cross-sectional fabric samples show the highest increase in thickness loss under wet condition followed by round and hollow crosssectional polyester needle-punched nonwoven samples. Compression resilience is the highest in case of round cross-sectional fabric without reinforcing material under wet condition than fabric with reinforcing material. The initial thickness increases, and percentage compression and thickness loss decrease with the increase in fabric weight irrespective of fiber cross-sectional shapes both in dry and wet conditions. The initial thickness, percentage compression, and percentage compression resilience of the fabric decrease but percentage thickness loss increases under wet condition compared to the dry condition irrespective of the fiber cross-sectional shape. Compared to other crosssectioned polyester samples, the hollow cross-section samples undergo very less consolidation under wet condition due to their consolidated structure. There is a drastic
Sanjoy Debnath, National Institute of Research on Jute & Allied Fibre Technology, Indian Council of
Agricultural Research, 12, Regent Park, Kolkata 700 040, West Bengal, India
Email: email@example.com 1National Institute of Research on Jute & Allied Fibre Technology, Indian Council of Agricultural Research, 12,
Regent Park, Kolkata 700 040, West Bengal, India 2Department of Textile Technology, Anna University, Guindy, Chennai 600 025, India at NANYANG TECH UNIV LIBRARY on May 24, 2015jit.sagepub.comDownloaded from drop in compression resilience and increase in thickness loss under wet condition than in dry state irrespective of the fiber cross-sectional shape.
Keywords compression property under wet condition, fiber cross-sectional shape, needle-punched non-woven, polyester fiber, reinforcing material
Compression property is one of the most important properties for the characterization of needle-punched nonwoven fabrics. Most of the research studies on compression properties have been studied under dry condition [1–3]. Modeling of compression properties of needle-punched nonwoven fabrics using artificial neural network has also been studied by Debnath and Madhusoothanan .
Properties of textile structures behave differently in dry and wet conditions.
Morris  presented an account of the measurement of the transverse deformation of nylon, acrylic, and viscose rayon under both dry and wet conditions and various loads acting normal to the fiber longitudinal axis. The results show that lateral deformation of nylon fibers in both wet and dry states has the highest modulus, whereas acrylic fibers appear to be the least affected by immersion in water compared to their dry state. Viscose rayon fibers are mostly affected by water and experience a reduction in modulus by about 20 factors. Debnath  concluded that the wet strength of jute-needled fabric is much higher than the dry strength under standard conditions. Debnath  also found that the value of stress of a wet fabric is higher than that of the standard fabric at any particular direction of measurement, irrespective of fiber length and fineness, though the value of strain of the wet fabric is lower than that of the standard fabric. The tenacity values of wet jute–viscose, jute–nylon, and jute–cotton-blended needle-punched fabrics are higher than those of the standard fabrics irrespective of blend proportions. Hearle and Sultan  reported that with a lightweight reinforcement fabric, the initial modulus of the needle-punched nonwoven fabric increases, but the tenacity reduces compared to a fabric without a base cloth. However, tenacity and initial modulus values significantly increase with a heavier reinforced fabric. Debnath et al.  studied the water absorbency of jute and polypropylene-blended needle-punched nonwoven fabrics and reported that those fabrics can hold as high as 700% of water on basis of their dry weight. Debnath and Madhusoothanan [1–3] studied the compression properties of jute and polypropylene-blended polyester and polypropylene needle-punched nonwoven fabrics under dry condition. Thickness loss and compression percentage of parallel laid needle-punched polypropylene nonwoven are higher than cross-laid needle-punched nonwoven fabrics . However, there has been dearth of published work, which encompasses the effect of compression properties under wet condition. Hence, it is essential to know the compression
Debnath and Madhusoothanan 293 at NANYANG TECH UNIV LIBRARY on May 24, 2015jit.sagepub.comDownloaded from behavior of the needle-punched fabrics under wet condition too because of their specific applications such as geotextile and carpets.
In this study, the effects of reinforcing material, fabric weight, and fiber crosssectional shapes on compression properties of polyester needle-punched nonwoven have been studied. Polyester fibers are selected in this study not only due to their inexpensiveness but also because of their good resistance against chemical and environmental factors (namely, ultraviolet ray) compared to other synthetic fibers and largely available in different cross-sectional shapes. Comparisons between dry and wet compression properties of polyester needle-punched nonwoven fabrics have also been covered. Initial thickness, percentage compression, thickness loss, and percentage compression resilience are considered as compression properties. Therefore, this study will help the manufacturers to deal with needle-punched nonwoven fabrics.