Increasing the production of high-performance natural fibres that minimise their impact on the environment is a challenge that flax (Linum usitatissinum L.) cannot address alone. In flax traditional production territories, hemp (Cannabis sativa L.) can be a complementary source of high added value fibres if their yield of long line fibres can be maximised to levels equivalent to the one of flax. The objective of the present work was to establish process parameters maximising the long line fibre yield using flax dedicated scutching and hackling devices. A lab-scale scutching/hackling device was used to establish sets of process parameters which best improve the long fibre scutching yield and as a consequence minimise the production of tow fibres. Decreases in straw processing transfer and beating speeds during scutching were necessary so that to be less aggressive on the straw and fibres. Very high long fibre yields were obtained after scutching and hackling at the laboratory scale (18 % of the hemp straw mass). These very high results, combined to high straw yield production in the field indicate that hemp can be a very productive source of high-performance fibres as these ones showed tensile properties completely suitable for a textile use as well as for load bearing composite materials. If the potential of high production yields and high mechanical and morphological properties was demonstrated at the lab-scale, this one should be improved at the industrial scale. Suggestions to reach this goal are provided to prevent too high transformation of long fibres into tows and to keep the mechanical potential maximum. When using optimised parameters and a lab-scale scutching/hackling device, it was demonstrated that hemp has the potential for providing equivalent amounts of long fibres per hectare than flax with tensile properties about 20 % lower than the ones of flax.
|Journal||Industrial Crops and Products|
|Publication status||Published - 2021|
- Fibre yields
- Mechanical properties
- Morphological properties