AATCC 20A Test Method for Fiber Analysis: Quantitative

Purpose of Test

This fiber analysis test provides individual procedures for the quantitative assessment of moisture content, non-fibrous content, and fiber composition of textiles.

This test uses different analysis methods to identify fiber composition, including:

  • Mechanical
  • Chemical
  • Microscopial

The test method is recommended for various blends of fiber:

Natural Fibers:

  • Cotton 
  • Hemp
  • Hair
  • Ramie
  • Linen
  • Silk
  • Wool

Man-Made Fibers:

  • Acrylic
  • Acetate
  • Modacrylic
  • Nylon
  • Polyester
  • Rayon
  • Olefin
  • Triexta
  • Spandex

Terminology Defined

Fiber Analysis – The method of identifying and analyzing the fiber used on the textile.

Clean Fiber Content – Amount of fiber after the removal of all non-fibrous contents.

Moisture Content – The amount of moisture present in the fiber.

Non Fibrous Content – These include fiber finishes, yarn lubricants, fabric softeners, starches, waxes, oils, soaps, and more non-fiber materials that were added to the fabric.

Fiber Composition – The composite materials that make up the fiber textile.

Fiber Cutter – A cutting tool with two razor blades, an assemblage and a threaded pin that hold the blades in position.

Fiber Cutter (Image Source: Textile Instrument)

Dissolving Agents – The liquid substances used in the test to dissolve the fiber.

Materials Used for Test

  • Test Specimen
  • Analytical Balance
  • Oven
  • Dessicator
  • Soxhlet Extractor
  • Constant Temperature Bath
  • Weighing Bottle
  • Erlenmeyer Flask
  • Beaker
  • Filtering Crucible
  • Suction Flask with Adapter
  • Microscope
  • Projection Microscope
  • Fiber Cutter
  • Wedge Scale
  • Required Chemicals
AATCC 20 Textile Exam Microscope (Image Source: MicroscopeWorld)

Testing Procedure

The test methods for the quantitative analysis of fiber include:

  • Moisture Content Test
  • Non Fibrous Content Test
  • Chemical Analysis Test

Test Procedure (Summary)

Moisture Content Test

Part 1: Preparation of test specimen: The test specimen is collected and weighed on a balance. It will be dried in the oven under certain conditions and temperatures.

Part 2: Cooling of the test specimen: After a given period, the test specimen is removed from the oven and allowed to cool at room temperature. 

Part 3: Repeating the process and reweighing. The heating and cooling process is repeated then the fiber is reweighed. Standard calculations are used to identify the moisture content.

Non-Fibrous Content Test – Clean Fiber Content

Part 1: Preparation of test specimen: The test specimen is dried in the oven under certain conditions that differ depending on the kind of textile treatment applied.

Part 2: Wetting and drying of test specimens: Depending on the treatment type, the test specimen will be wetted with different liquid solutions, dried, rinsed, and dried again under certain conditions.

Part 3: Calculation: Standard calculations are used to identify the non-fibrous content of the specimen.

Chemical Analysis Test

Part 1: Preparation of test specimen: The test specimen is dried under certain conditions and weighed.

Part 2: Adding dissolving agents: Certain amounts of dissolving agents are added to the fiber and then dried again at certain conditions.

Part 3: Calculation: Through the use of standard calculations, the fiber analysis is completed.

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