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Polymers in Clothing

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Emily Sawyer

on 10 December 2012

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Transcript of Polymers in Clothing

Polymers in Clothing Emily Sawyer A Polymer is a large, usually chain-like
molecule built from small molecules, called monomers. BIG IDEAS What is a Polyester "Polyester is a polymer formed by a condensation reaction, that results in ester linkages between monomers"(DiGuiseppe, 95). Characteristics of Polyester Fabrics and fibres very strong .
Durable: resistant to most chemicals, stretching and shrinking, wrinkle resistant and mildew and abrasion resistant.
Hydrophobic in nature, and quick drying can be used for insulation by manufacturing hallow fibres.
What is Cotton Cotton fibers are harvested from the cotton plant, meaning it is an organic polymer. However the plant has been genetically modified to resist pesticides. The cellulose of the cotton plant "is arranged in a way that gives cotton unique properties of strength, durability, and absorbency. Each fibre is made up of twenty to thirty layers of cellulose coiled in a neat series of natural springs. When the cotton boll (seed case) is opened the fibres dry into flat, twisted, ribbon-like shapes and become kinked together and interlocked. This interlocked form is ideal for spinning into a fine yarn" (world of molecules, 2). Characteristics of Cotton Comfortable and soft
Colour retention
Fair strength
What is Rayon Rayon is "regenerated cellulose" meaning it is derived from naturally occurring cellulose, but requires extensive processing to become rayon. Characteristics of Rayon Drapes well.
Easy to dye.
Highly absorbent.
What is Silk Silk is a filament fibre formed from proteins secreted by Bombyx mori, or the silkworm. Silkworms are not actually worms, but caterpillar. The silk fibre is harvested from their cocoons.
Characteristics of silk Protein polymers All proteins are made of amino acids. An amino acid is an organic molecule that contains an amine and a corboxyl group, and hydrogen atoms. A protein polymer is built by condensation reactions between amino acids. A peptide is two or more amino acids linked together. This peptide bond forms between the amino acid monomers, to produce the protein polymer. Strongest natural polymer.
Strength mainly due to lenght of continuous fibres.
Drapes well.
cellulose is reacted with acetic anhydride to form cellulose acetate. Because cellulose acetate is soluble in polar solvents it made production cheap and efficient. What is Nylon Nylon is a polyamide, which is formed in a condensation reaction between a carboxylic acid and ammonia, or a primary, or secondary amine. The carboxyl groups allow many hydrogen bonds to form between polymer chains Characteristics of Nylon Very strong.
High melting point (216°C) due to hydrogen bonds.
How are polymers formed Synthetic polymers are produced in chemical reactions this process is known as polymerization.
Polymerizations occur in varied forms which consist of the repetitive chemical bonding of monomers. Combinations of heat, pressure and catalysis alter the chemical bonds that hold monomers together, causing them to bond with one another. Most often, they do so in a linear fashion, creating chains of monomers called polymers (Kelly, 1). Condensation reactions involve the loss of water through binding of adjoining hydroxyl and hydrogen atoms. Addition polymers are a result of a reaction between unsaturated carbon-carbon bonds. What are the Different Types of Polymers Synthetic Polymers Plastics are synthetic polymers that can be molded into shape. Polyester and nylon are plastic polymers. Not all polymers are plastic, but all plastics are polymers.

Properties Chemically nonreactive due to structure of stable single bonds.
Weak forces between carbon atoms allow the plastic to flex and stretch.
Natural polymers Cellulose is the earths most abundant polymer, cotton is cellulose in its purest form. Amylose and cellulose are very similar but their bond angles differ 60° which makes a huge difference. We cannot digest cellulose so we wear it instead.
Protein polymers are made of carboxyl and amine group. There are 20 different amino acids, and different combinations code for different proteins allowing for different functions. Proteins may be globular or sheet-like. The shape depends on: hydrogen bonding, van de waals forces, ionic bonds and covalent bonds. How have Synthetic Polymers in Clothing affected Society Plastics come from small organic molecules containing carbon, usually oil. Production of synthetic polymers used in clothing allowed for cheap mass production. We buy our clothes rather than making them ourselves. Because of its large availability clothing has become a status symbol rather than a way to keep warm and stay modest. How Did polymers in clothing affect technology Polymer chemistry has contributed to clothing technology by providing synthetic polymers to replicate or replace natural polymers such as silk, cotton or wool. Chemistry continues to contribute to clothing technology today, primarily through surface science and nanotechnology. Products like CoolMax and GoreTex work by transporting moisture (sweat) away from the body, because the surface of the fibers or membranes has been chemically changed. What are the Effects on the Environment Natural polymers do not affect the environment while synthetic polymers do. Synthetic polymers take a very long time to decompose, yet 20-25% of landfill weight is plastic. Once plastics do decompose they release volatile organic compounds or VOC's into the environment which contribute to pollution and climate change ( Killam, 2). What is a polymer? Are your clothes made of a natural or synthetic polymer?
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