Comparison of Normal Fibers and High Performance Fibers

Last Updated on 25/12/2020

Comparison between Normal Fibers and High Performance Fibers

Muhammad Imteaz Anjum
School Of Textile And Design
University Of Management And Technology Lahore
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Normal Fibers
Fibers which are utilized to satisfied aesthetic properties are known as normal fibers such as cotton, flex, wool etc.

High Performance Fibers
High performance fibers which are engineered for specific uses that require exceptional strength, heat resistance and chemical resistance. They are also known as high tensile / high modulus fibers. For example carbon, glass, rayon etc.

High Performance Fibers
Fig: High performance fibers

Comparison of Normal Fibers and High Performance Fibers 
Now here is the comparison of some normal fibers and than compare with high performance fibers.


Cotton is a crystalline fiber, Its polymer system is about 65 to 70 percent crystalline and 35 to 30 percent amorphous. The cotton polymers are well oriented and probably no further apart than 0.5 nm in the crystalline regions. Hydrogen bonds are dominant and most important forces of attraction present in the polymer system of cotton.

  1. Comfortable Soft hand.
  2. Good absorbency.
  3. Color retention.
  4. Prints well.
  5. Machine-washable.
  6. Dry-cleanable.
  7. Good strength.
  8. Drapes well.


The flax is a thick, regular fiber with a subdued lusture. It ranges in length from about 10 cm to 100 cm, averaging about 50 cm. As flax fibers are strand of cells, its thickness depends upon the number of cells in one fiber cross-section. Generally there are three to six cells present in a fiber cross-section. The cells are about 25 mm long. The length to breadth ratio for flax fiber varies from 15000 : 1 to 1500 : 1 for the long and short fibers respectively. Chemically flax polymer is composed of cellulose. The degree of polymerization is about 18000 which means flax polymer is made up of about 18000 cellobiose units.
70% is composed of cellulose, it cannot provoke allergies, absorbs humidity and allows the skin to breathe: therefore it is very indicated in the manufacture of summer articles. Very resistant, above all if wetted it can be washed many times without alteration, rather it becomes softer, something very important for articles of clothing and for daily use which require frequent washing such as shirts. Having very low elasticity, linen cloths do not deform themselves.


The wool fiber is crimped, fine to thick, regular fibre. The wool polymer is linear, keratin polymer, with some very short side groups and it normally has a helical configuration. The repeating unit of the wool polymer is the amino acid. Amino acids are linked to each other by the peptide bond to form the wool polymer. A wool polymer is about  140 nm long and about 1 nm thick.

  1. They are composed of amino acids.
  2. They have excellent absorbency.
  3. Moisture regain is high.
  4. They tend to be warmer than others.
  5. They have poor resistance to alkalis but good resistance to acids.
  6. They have good elasticity and resiliency

High performance fibers

Polymer chain in high performance fibers is straight and have not folding. High performance fibers  have proper orientation of polymers. High performance fibers  also have more crystalline structure and have less amorphous regions. The breadth ratio of high performance fibers is very high which make them more stronger. The degree of polymerization is also very high which is directly proportional to heat resistance of fibers.

  1. High stiffness to weight ratio
  2. High strength
  3. Corrosion resistant
  4. Fatigue resistant
  5. Energy Absorption on Impact
  6. More heat resistance
  7. Good chemical resistance

High performance fiber are more stiff than the normal fiber. It also has proper orientation (more axial orientation) of fiber and fibrils throughout the structure. These fiber has no distortion in polymeric chain system. The rubbery behavior is more in high performance fiber than the normal fiber at some extent. The weaving type changing changes the strength and comfort related properties of fabric made of same fibers.


  2. Textile Science by E.P.G Gohl, L.D. Vilensky

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