Fiber optic fabrics, also known as luminous fabrics, are created through the interlacing of warps and wefts using plastic optical fiber as a warp thread.
What are the steps involved in weaving these fabrics? Well, let’s go into more detail about this.
1. Preparation before weaving:
a) First of all, textile engineers make a production sheet according to the requirements of production processes. The raw materials used for the process sheet must be plastic optical fibers, and their specifications are typically 0.25MM or 0.5MM.
b) Workers then put together warp beams according to the process sheet. As shown in the following figure, it is very important not to interlace the warp and weft on either side of the length of the fibers (the non-interlaced portion is for the fiber to be contained after the production step):
c) The machine starts as soon as the warp beam is pulled. Weaving fiber fabrics is generally done on rapier looms.
2. Things to consider when weaving:
a) Let us say the test machine is ready and has been started. Different problems require different adjustments during the test. Mechanical engineers need to be hardworking and experienced to accomplish this.
b) With the machine adjusted, workers can weave large amounts of fabric safely and efficiently. Note that the weaving process has to be strict and clean since the fiber is already dyed and does not need subsequent dyeing and finishing.
c) Workers must remove fiber optic fabrics from the reel after weaving a certain amount, so that quality inspection team may inspect them.
d) Handling and storing after weaving: the quality inspector examines the fiber optic fabric after the weaving is complete, and then the packaging workers in the warehouse pack it in a 3-layer package, which should be moisture-proof, waterproof, and UV-resistant. Temperatures should not exceed -15 degrees Celsius in storage. In no case should the temperature exceed 85 degrees Celsius. Direct sunlight should be avoided.
3. Common problems associated with weaving optical fiber fabrics:
a) When weaving, different tissue materials of the weft can affect the force of the traction needle on the machine, and breakage may occur. The machine must be adjusted in accordance with the actual situation to the most suitable force for multiple wefts at the same time. If possible, there should be no or few weft breaks in fiber optic fabrics, so as not to affect their quality.
b) If the warp is 20D polyester filament, a protective house must be built around the weaving machine to prevent flying flocculation and dirt from affecting the warp break and ensure the fabric’s cleanliness.
c) The fibers in the optical fiber fabric should be treated with side-lighting during the weaving process according to the actual requirements. Treatment methods include the tail breaker wall treatment method and bearing frosting treatment method.
The discussion above is about the weaving of fiber optic fabrics. I encourage you to browse my other blog posts for more information regarding fiber optic fabrics, and let’s connect, communicate, and make progress in the field together!