Fiber Surfaces and Coatings

By Matt Jobbins, 1 minute to read
Industry: Technology: , Material: ,

Fibers are often tailored for their respective product using coatings. For example, absorbency or hydrophobicity can be built into fabrics using coated fibers. The surface roughness of individual fibers needs to be quantified for coating application. Optical profilometry is an ideal techniques for quantifying the roughness of surfaces.

Zeta-20 image of Nylon thread
Zeta-20 infinite depth of field optical profiler image of nylon thread.
Zeta-20 true color 3D optical profiler image of high gloss paper
Zeta-20 true color 3D optical profiler image of high gloss paper.

In the paper industry, texture, tensile strength, surface roughness and fiber dimensions, as well as the thickness of ink layers and glossy coatings must all be considered when manufacturing paper. The Zeta-20 optical profiler quickly images and measures surfaces, including those with extreme differences in reflectance.

Diagram of the relationship between paper quality and surface roughness
As paper quality increases from regular to a high gloss, the surface roughness decreases, shown here using root mean square values.

Using the optional 3D Roughness Reconstruction software, surface profiles and relative roughness measurements can be acquired with the Phenom desktop SEM.

3D reconstruction of nylon strands
3D Reconstruction of nylon threads using Phenom desktop SEM