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Evaluation of post-consumer cellulosic textile waste for chemical recycling based on cellulose degree of polymerization and molar mass distribution
RISE - Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy, Biorefinery and Energy.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4253-3801
RISE - Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy, Biorefinery and Energy.
Aalto University, Finland.
Aalto University, Finland.
2019 (English)In: Textile research journal, ISSN 0040-5175, E-ISSN 1746-7748Article in journal (Refereed) In press
Abstract [en]

The aim of this study is to improve the understanding of which end-of-life cellulosic textiles can be used for chemical recycling according to their composition, wear life and laundering—domestic versus service sector. For that purpose, end-of-life textiles were generated through laboratorial laundering of virgin fabrics under domestic and industrial conditions, and the cellulose content and its intrinsic viscosity and molar mass distribution were measured in all samples after two, 10, 20, and 50 laundering cycles. Results presented herein also address the knowledge gap concerning polymer properties of end-of-life man-made cellulosic fabrics—viscose and Lyocell. The results show that post-consumer textiles from the home consumer sector, using domestic laundering, can be assumed to have a similar, or only slightly lower, degree of polymerization than the virgin textiles (−15%). Post-consumer textiles from the service sector, using industrial laundering, can be assumed to have a substantially lower degree of polymerization. An approximate decrease of up to 80% of the original degree of polymerization can be expected when they are worn out. A higher relative decrease for cotton than man-made cellulosic textiles is expected. Furthermore, in these laboratorial laundering trials, no evidence evolved that the cellulose content in blended polyester fabrics would be significantly affected by domestic or industrial laundering. With respect to molar mass distribution, domestic post-consumer cotton waste seems to be the most suitable feedstock for chemical textile recycling using Lyocell-type processes, although a pre-treatment step might be required to remove contaminants and lower the intrinsic viscosity to 400–500 ml/g. © The Author(s) 2019.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
SAGE Publications Ltd , 2019.
Keywords [en]
cotton, degree of polymerization, domestic laundering, industrial laundering, Lyocell, viscose, Cellulose, Cellulosic resins, Fabrics, Polymerization, Recycling, Textile chemical treatment, Viscosity, Waste treatment, Industrial conditions, Intrinsic viscosity, Lyocells, Man made cellulosics, Man-made cellulosic fabrics, Molar mass distribution, Laundering
National Category
Natural Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:ri:diva-39570DOI: 10.1177/0040517519848159Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85067807739OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ri-39570DiVA, id: diva2:1340444
Available from: 2019-08-05 Created: 2019-08-05 Last updated: 2019-08-05Bibliographically approved

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Wedin, Helena

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