Education and Human Sciences, College of (CEHS)


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A THESIS Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Science, Major: Textiles, Merchandising and Fashion Design, Minor: Statistics, Under the Supervision of Professor Yiqi Yang, Lincoln, Nebraska: May, 2013.

Copyright (c) 2013 Yue Zhang


Distillers dried grains (DDGS), the coproducts of corn ethanol production, were used as a textile sizing agent on cotton, polyester and polyester/cotton blends in an effort to find inexpensive and biodegradable alternatives to sizing agents such as poly(vinyl alcohol) that are currently used. Although DDGS is an inexpensive, biodegradable and abundant co-product, it has limited industrial applications. DDGS is a mixture of carbohydrates, proteins and oil which are used as sizing agents or as size additives. The effects of DDGS extraction conditions on sizing evaluation parameters such as fiber adhesion, film properties, viscosity and fabric abrasion were studied in comparison with commercially available PVA or starch based size. Among the various conditions studied, DDGS that was extracted in 0.5% alkali concentration solution for 1 hour was most suitable for textiles sizing, based on the improvement in the strength and elongation of rovings and fabric abrasion resistance. The Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) of DDGS size decreased 80% in 3 days compared to 25% for PVA demonstrating that DDGS was easily biodegradable in activated sludge. Although DDGS contains up to 30% protein, the total nitrogen and ammonia released from DDGS sizing agent had negligible effect on biodegradability. Good sizing performance and easy biodegradability demonstrate that DDGS based sizes have potential to serve as an environmentally friendly sizing agent.