Sunday, July 15, 2012


The changing fortunes of viscose may present problems for producers in Europe and worldwide. European producers such as Courtaulds, Lenzing AG and Hoechst AG have trimmed annual output over the last decade and taken steps to improve performance while keeping prices down. There are now signs that viscose is becoming more popular in the contemporary climate of environmental concern as it is based on a regenerative natural resource and is biodegradable, causing a surge in demand. New developments in viscose are underway such as Fibrafinn MS, a high quality fibre for high performance spinning equipment from Sateri, and Courtauld's extra strong tencel fibres. The background to the situation at Avtex Fibre US, now supported by NASA is outlined. 

 Anon, UK Text. News vol. 5, no. 6, 1988, pp 10-11

This is one of the few releases using "tencel" and including it with new developments in viscose. The capital letter was dropped when we hoped to use "tencel" as the generic name for solvent spun cellulose, to avoid having to call it rayon.  

Here also Avtex Fibres USA are mentioned as being supported by NASA.  I think they were in Chapter 11 at this time but were the only qualified supplier of viscose for carbonising to make rocket exhaust cones.  Avtex were still using the viscose process and the factories installed by Courtaulds in the 30's which had to be transferred to US companies under Lend-Lease during the war.

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