A stretchy synthetic cloth, polyester spandex fabric is highly sought after. However, “spandex” does not have a registered trademark; instead, it is shorthand for a group of textiles composed of a synthetic polymer copolymer but manufactured differently. Spandex, Lycra, as well as elastane are all interchangeable names.
You’ll often find this stretchy material in body-hugging clothing for the general public. Pure Spandex is seldom used in clothing; instead, it is usually woven with more significant amounts of other synthesized, semi-synthetic, and organic fibers.
To complete this process stage, macroglycol and a diisocyanate monomer are combined in a unique tank designed for chemical reactions.
This prepolymer is then subjected to a reaction with diamine acid after the dry spinning process has been used.
Following this step, the mixture is reduced with a liquid to make it more manageable by making it thinner, and it is then introduced into a fiber production cell.
The elastane material is cured, while the spinning of this cell produces these fibers. The solution is forced to pass through a spinneret while it is contained inside this cell.
The liquid polymer is transformed into solid strands by subjecting these fibers to high temperatures inside a mixture of nitrogen and solvent gas.
When the strands finally emerge from the cylindrical rotating cell, they are twisted and bundled together by a device that uses compressed air.
Afterward, a finishing agent made of stearic acid or a similar polymer is applied to the spandex material. This step is optional.
After being wound onto a spool, the material may be woven into various types of cloth.
For every use requiring stretchiness, whether domestic or commercial, Spandex fabric is the go-to. This fabric has exploded in popularity since its conception; now, it can be found in hundreds of clothes and worn by people all over the globe. Pure elastane fabric could be employed to create ultra-stretchy or body-hugging clothes. However, due to the high cost of that fabric, the expensive clothes worn by pros may be costly for the average customer. More often than not, Spandex is a component of more significant material.
Several multinational firms produce Spandex fabric. Companies like DuPont operate in dozens of nations worldwide, while others may focus on just one. A large percentage of the world’s largest Spandex is produced in China. Most of this cloth used to be made throughout the United States, although lower labor costs in China have shifted the industry over the last several decades.
Spandex fabric has a high asking price because of its scarcity and difficulty producing it. For comparison, organic materials like cotton and sheep’s wool are often less costly than synthetics like polyester and nylon. However, this higher expense is seldom felt at the commercial level since elastane is often used in small amounts in clothing—however, the cost of a garment increases in proportion to the amount of spandex fabric it contains. For instance, spandex-heavy sportswear and dancewear for professionals may be rather pricey.