Aluminium Fabric

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Aluminium Fabric
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Metallic threads have been around for thousands of years, used in the clothes of kings and other people of status, in Persian carpets and in Indian saris. These metallic threads would largely have been gold and silver, hammered into extremely thin sheets, cut into ribbons and worked into fabrics. Historically, metallic threads would have been constructed by wrapping a metal strip around a fibre core (usually cotton or silk), often revealing the colour of the fibre core with decorative effects.

Most contemporary metallic fibres are manufactured by one of two basic processes: lamination or metallization. Lamination produces a plastic-coated metal, whereby a layer of aluminium is sealed between two layers of acetate or polyester film, and these fibres are then cut into tiny strips for yarns. The metallization process produces a metal-coated plastic by heating the metal until it vaporises and is deposited at high pressure on a polyester film, which is likewise cut into tiny fibres. It is likely that this sample is metallised, since this second process is said to produce fibres that are thinner, more flexible, and more comfortable - like this silky, sleek sample.

Alternatively, less common processes for the production of metal fibres include shaving them from wire (as in the case of steel wool), ‘bundle drawing’ them from larger diameter wire, casting them from molten metal, or growing them around a seed (often carbon). Metallic fibres are often used for decorative purposes, for example in lamé and brocade, but because of their mechanical properties they also have a number of technical applications. Aluminium is generally renowned for being extremely lightweight, whilst also very strong. It also has anti-static properties, does not tarnish and reflects radiant heat and electromagnetic radiation, so is perfect for use in protective clothing for demanding environments like fire proximity suits.

Sample ID: 91


Donated by
Georgia Chatzivasileiadi
Metal | Polymer
Aluminium | Antistatic | Conductive | Fibre | Fine | Grey | Lamination | Light | Mesh | Metal | Metallic | Metallised | Protective | Reflective | Textile | Woven

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