Water absorbancy of never-dried cotton fibers
Source: Cellulose, Volume 6, Number 2, June 1999 , pp. 167-176(10)
Abstract:Although never-dried cotton (NDC) fiber has been known to exhibit extremely high water absorbency, the reason for this has not yet been elucidated. In this study, changes in water absorbency, bound water content as revealed by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), cellulose content and fiber cross-section observed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) for NDC fibers at several stages of development (27–57 days post-anthesis (DPA)) were investigated. It was found that the bound water content (27 g/l00 g) of NDC fibers at 50 DPA is much smaller than that (40–73 g/l00 g) for fibers at 27–43 DPA. Cellulose synthesis takes place within the cotton boll, a closed water-containing system. Our results are rationalized by assuming that these water molecules are preventing the formation of intermolecular hydrogen bonds between the cellulose molecules as they are being formed. Other explanations for our experimental findings are: (i) the coexistence of precursors of cellulose and components, such as -(1,3)-;glucans, that are very hydrophilic, and (ii) the presence in each NDC fiber of a prominent lumen that acts as a capillary system for water.
Document Type: Regular Paper
Affiliations: 1: Faculty of Human Life and Environmental Sciences, Mukogawa Women's University, Nishinomiya 663-8558, Japan 2: USDA, Southern Regional Research Center, New Orleans, Louisiana 70124, USA
Publication date: 1999-06-01