Thursday, October 31, 2019




It is a regenerated fibre.  Bamboo fibre is not directly obtained from a bamboo tree. It is a cellulosic fibre. It is manufactured from the pulp of bamboo plant’s wood. It is a re-generated rayon made of cellulose obtained from bamboo plants. Since this fibre is re-generated from the bamboo pulp so that this is called bamboo rayon fibre. The bamboo fibres are also extracted by enzyme retting without converting the bamboo wood into pulp. This kind of fibre is known as " bamboo linen". It is composed of cellulose, Hemicellulose, and lignin mainly.




There are more than 1600 species of bamboo plants found in different parts of the world. “These species of bamboo are grown in various climatic conditions from cold mountains to hot tropical regions”. Near about millions of hectares area of our planet is covered with the bamboo plant. The most of area covered by bamboo plants is found in the Asia continent.

The most suitable temperature for bamboo plants ranges from " 20 °C to 26 °C". The bamboo plant grows in those regions which are located above 900 – 1600 metres from sea level. The bamboo plants require annual average rainfall of "2000 – 2500" millimetres. The bamboo plant grows well in the surrounding atmosphere having a relative humidity of approximately "75% - 85 %". Weak or moderate wind helps the bamboo plants to stand well.  The high growth rate of bamboo and the fact that bamboo can grow in such diverse climates makes the bamboo plant a sustainable and versatile resource.


Scientifically, the bamboo plant falls in the category of grass. It is not a tree. Since we know that the bamboo plant’s vast root network sprouts new shoots after each harvesting, therefore there is no need for replantation of the bamboo plants after harvesting. They grow again after each harvesting. The bamboo plantation requires for one time only.s The vast root network almost zoom up while we watch them, pulling in sunlight and greenhouse gases and converting them to new green growth. Bamboo just might be the world’s most sustainable resource. It is the fastest-growing grass and can shoot up a yard or more a day. 


Bamboo plant doesn't require any kind of fertilizer and pesticide to boost their growth. We can say that the bamboo plant is a pure organic source for producing textile fibres. The presence of an antimicrobial substance in the bamboo plant prevents the attack of pests and fungi.  Although some pathogen problems do still exist in some bamboo plantations. 


when a new shoot comes out from the ground, the new bamboo tree achieves its full growth within the period of 8 to 10 weeks. “The tree is gotten maturity in 3–5 years”. Bamboo is re-harvested continuously without damaging the surrounding environment. Since bamboo is a type of grass so that it grows automatically after being harvested like grass on a lawn. This regular harvesting is actually of benefit to the health of the plant. Some studies  show that feeling of canes leads to healthy re-growth and an increase in the amount of biomass the next year 


Bamboo is high yield crop.  The yields ( output) of the bamboo crop falls up to  60 tonnes per hectare. It is more than most of the trees.  Today, when the land use is under big pressure, bamboo’s high yield per hectare becomes very significant.


There are two processes used to produce bamboo fibres:

Mechanical process

Chemical process


Litrax (a Swiss company)  engaged in the production of the bamboo fibre claims that their process is more natural during processing the bamboo wood into fibres. In the mechanical method of producing bamboo fibre, the woody parts of the plant are crushed with the help of a crushing machine. The enzyme retting is applied to this crushed material using natural enzymes. These enzymes help to break the bamboo walls into a soft and pulpy mass. The natural fibres get obtained after retting. These natural fibres are combed out mechanically and are spun into the yarn.  This method of production is similar to the production process used in linen jute or hemp fibres. This production method is more eco friendly than another method. “Due to more natural method of producing bamboo fibres, the fabrics made from this bamboo fibres are also called bamboo linen”. This method of production is not used commonly because this is a much labour-consuming process. The cost of production is too high. Due to these reasons very small quantity of bamboo linen is produced for clothing. 


This method of production of bamboo fibres is used commonly but it is not an eco-friendly method of production. In this process, bamboo fibres are regenerated from cellulose obtained from bamboo pulp like rayon or modal. “Due to much similar method of production bamboo fibres obtained by this method is also known as bamboo rayon”. Chemically manufactured bamboo fibre is a regenerated cellulosic fibre.  Chemically manufactured bamboo fibre has a feel and hand similar to that of rayon and modal.

The chemical method of producing bamboo fibres is basically the same process, which is used to produce rayon fibre from wood or cotton lints. Generally, hydrolysis alkalization with multi-phase bleaching technology is used in the chemical process of producing bamboo fibres. This is very common and dominating technology. The whole process completes in the following steps:

1. First of all the leaves and soft inner pith is extracted from the bamboo trunk. This material is crushed mechanically.

2. The crushed material is kept in a solution of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) having a concentration of 15% - 20% for soaking. This soaking process takes 1- 3 hours to complete. The temperature during soaking is kept between 20 °C – 25 °C. An alkali solution of bamboo cellulose results after the completion of soaking. 

3. The alkali solution of bamboo cellulose is then pressed to remove any excess amount of sodium hydroxide solution. Now, this alkali cellulose is crushed with the help of a grinding machine. the grinded material is left for drying for a period of 24 hours. 

4. Approximately a third as much carbon disulphide is added to the bamboo alkali cellulose. The carbon disulphide sulphurize the bamboo alkali cellulose and compound jell results. Any remaining amount of carbon disulphide is removed by evaporation due to decompression and cellulose sodium xanthogenate results.

5. A diluted solution of sodium hydroxide is added to the cellulose sodium xanthogenate. This sodium hydroxide completely dissolves the cellulose sodium xanthogenate. Viscose solution of its results now. This viscose solution contains 5% sodium hydroxide and 7%-15% bamboo cellulose.

6. “Now this viscose solution is ready for spinning”.The viscose bamboo cellulose is passed through spinneret nozzles with the help of high pressure feeding pump. The fibres coming out from nozzles of spinneret go into a large vessel having a solution of diluted sulphuric acid. This sulphuric acid makes it hard to viscose bamboo cellulose sodium xanthogenate and reconverts it to cellulosic bamboo fibres. These fibres are wound onto the bobbins or cut into staple fibres as per requirement. 


The properties of bamboo fibres are given in below table:


The bamboo fibre has the following uses:

• Apparels, sweaters, bath-suits, underwear, tight t-shirt, socks.

Because of its anti-bacterial property, the non-woven fabrics made of bamboo fibres are widely used to make hygiene products such as sanitary napkins, masks, mattresses,food-packing bags.

It is used to make home furnishing products such as curtain, television cover, wallpaper and sofa slipcover.

Due to good moisture absorbency, it is used to make towels and bathrobes.

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