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Publication numberCA2634713 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberCA 2634713
PCT numberPCT/US2006/046766
Publication date12 Jul 2007
Filing date7 Dec 2006
Priority date20 Dec 2005
Also published asCN101410561A, CN101410561B, US7370395, US20070137064, US20080295307, WO2007078569A2, WO2007078569A3
Publication numberCA 2634713, CA 2634713 A1, CA 2634713A1, CA-A1-2634713, CA2634713 A1, CA2634713A1, PCT/2006/46766, PCT/US/2006/046766, PCT/US/2006/46766, PCT/US/6/046766, PCT/US/6/46766, PCT/US2006/046766, PCT/US2006/46766, PCT/US2006046766, PCT/US200646766, PCT/US6/046766, PCT/US6/46766, PCT/US6046766, PCT/US646766
InventorsThomas Yiu-Tai Tam
ApplicantHoneywell International Inc., Thomas Yiu-Tai Tam
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: CIPO, Espacenet
Heating apparatus and process for drawing polyolefin fibers
CA 2634713 A1
Abstract
A heating apparatus and process useful for drawing ultrahigh molecular weight polyolefln fibers, such as polyethylene libers. The heating apparatus includes a first set of rolls and a plurality of aligned ovens. The apparatus includes a second set of rolls at the exit of the ovens which rolls are adapted to provide the desired drawing of the polyolefin fibers. The apparatus and process provide a single draw step in a heated environment, with the use of preferably four or six horizontal ovens.
Claims(29)
1. A heating apparatus for drawing ultrahigh molecular weight polyolefin fibers in a one stage draw with continuous heating, said heating apparatus consisting essentially of:

a first set of rolls;

a plurality of aligned ovens, said ovens being arranged such that their respective ends are in abutting relationship to thereby provide a relatively long continuous oven, said plurality of ovens having one end adjacent to said first set of rolls and an opposite end; and a second set of rolls adjacent to said opposite end of said plurality of ovens, said first and second set of rolls being adapted to provide the desired drawing of said polyolefin fibers.
2. The heating apparatus of claim 1 wherein said fibers comprise ultrahigh molecular weight polyethylene fibers.
3. The heating apparatus of claim 1 wherein only a portion of said first set of rolls are heated.
4. The heating apparatus of claim 1 wherein said ovens are hot air circulating ovens.
5. The heating apparatus of claim 1 comprising at least four horizontally aligned ovens.
6. The heating apparatus of claim 1 comprising at least six horizontally aligned ovens.
7. The heating apparatus of claim 2 wherein each of said first set and said second set of rolls comprises 7 rolls.
8. The heating apparatus of claim 2 wherein each of said first set and said second set of rolls comprises 9 rolls.
9. The heating apparatus of claim 1 including means for transporting said fibers through said ovens in an approximate straight line.
10. The heating apparatus of claim 1 wherein said first and second sets of rolls comprise the only rolls in said heating apparatus and said fibers are unsupported between said first set of rolls and said second set of rolls.
11. A process for drawing ultrahigh molecular weight polyolefin fibers, said process consisting essentially of passing said fibers through a heating apparatus in a one stage draw with continuous heating, said heating apparatus consisting essentially of:

a first set of rolls;

a plurality of aligned ovens, said ovens being arranged such that their respective ends are in abutting relationship to thereby provide a relatively long continuous oven, said plurality of ovens having one end adjacent to said first set of rolls and an opposite end; and a second set of rolls adjacent to said opposite end of said plurality of ovens, said first and second set of rolls being operated under conditions to provide the desired drawing of said polyolefin fibers, and drawing said fibers between said first set of rolls and said second set of rolls to a predetermined draw ratio in a one stage draw with continuous heating of said fibers.
12. The process of claim 11 wherein said fibers comprise polyethylene fibers.
13. The process of claim 11 wherein only a portion of said first set of rolls are heated.
14. The process of claim 11 wherein said ovens are hot air circulating ovens.
15. The process of claim 11 wherein said apparatus comprises at least four horizontally aligned ovens.
16. The process of claim 11 wherein said apparatus comprises at least six horizontally aligned ovens.
17. The process of claim 12 wherein each of said first set and said second set of rolls comprises 7 rolls.
18. The process of claim 12 wherein each of said first set and said second set of rolls comprises 9 rolls.
19. The process of claim 11 wherein said fibers are transported through said ovens in an approximate straight line.
20. The process of claim 11 wherein said fibers are not supported by any structure in said ovens.
21. The process of claim 11 wherein said fibers are drawn to a draw ratio of from about 1.1:1 to about 15:1.
22. The process of claim 11 wherein said fibers are drawn to a draw ratio of from about 1.2:1 to about 10:1.
23. The process of claim 11 wherein said process operates at a line speed of from about 20 to about 100 meters/min.
24. The process of claim 11 wherein the temperature in said ovens is from 125C to 160C.
25. The process of claim 11 wherein the temperature in said ovens is from 130C to 150C.
26. The process of claim 11 wherein said first and second sets of rolls comprise the only rolls in said heating apparatus and wherein said fibers are unsupported between said first set of rolls and said second set of rolls.
27. The process of claim 11 wherein the fibers resulting from said process have a tenacity of at least 30 grams per denier.
28. The process of claim 11 wherein the fibers resulting from said process have a tenacity of at least 35 grams per denier and a initial tensile modulus of at least 1,200 g/d.
29. A product formed by the process of claim 11.
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

HEATING APPARATUS AND PROCESS FOR DRAWING
POLYOLEFIN FIBERS

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATONS

This application clairns the benetit of U.S. provisional application Serial Number 60/751.895, filed December 20. 2005.
~
BACKGROUND OF T.H.E .INVENTION
Field of the Invention This invention relates to a heating apparatus for dra\vinb polyolern fibers and a process for drawint; such fibers.

Description of the Related Art High tenacity polyolefin fibers, such as gel-spun polyetliylene fiibers, are known in the art. Ultraliigh molecular weiglit polyolel"ins include polyethylene.
polypropylene. poly(butene-I). poly(4-methyl-pentene-1). theii-copolymers.
blends ancl adducts. They ai-e prepared ti-om ultrahigh molecular weight polyolei=ins, and in the case of polyethylene, ultrahigh molecular weight polyethyiene (UHNIWPE).
Ttie preparltion and drawing of such fibers have been described in various patent publications, including U.S. Patents 4.413,1 10; 4,430.383; 4,436,689;
4,5 36,536; 41545,950; 4;551,296; 4,612,148; 4,617.233: 4,663.101; 5.032.338;
5,246.657; 5,286,435; 5.342,567; 5,578,374; 5,736,244: 5.741.451; 5,958,582;
5,972,498; 6,448.359; 6,969,553 and U.S. patent application publication 2005/0093200, the disclosures of which are expressly incorporated herein by reference to the eatent not inconipatible herewith. An oven for drawing tibers is also disclosed in U.S. patent application publication 2004/0040176.

UHMWPE yarns are useful in many applications. such as in impact absorption and ballistic resistant products. These include body armor, helmets, aircraft shields and composite sports equipment. They are also usefiil in tishin"
line, sails, ropes sutures and fabrics.

In a typical drawing configuration, the ;;el-sptui tibers are prepared by spinning a solution of ultrahigh molecular weibht polyethylene, cooling the solution filaments to a gel state and then removing the spinning solution. The spun fibers are then drawn to a highly oriented state. In the drawing operation.
typically the spun fibers are first fed to a tirst stack of lieated rolls, then through one or more ovens (typicallv four), then to a second stack of heated rolls, then to Ip one or more additional ovens (typically two), and finally to a third stack af heated rolls before the fiber or yarn is round up. The speed and temperature of the rol(s are adjusted, as are the teniperature and temperature protile in the ovens, to obtain the desired'drawing ratio and product characteristics in the fiber or yarn. The fibers are subjected to a two stage draw operation in accordance with this configuration.

Although such a configuration has produced excellent qualit-v fiber anci yarn, the overall operation is expensive due to the multiple heatin~
zones and sets of rolls; and the throushput is restricted. It would be desirable to provide an oven configuration foi- polyethylene fibers Nvhich %vas less expensive to operate and could provide drawn fibers or yarns at a higher rate.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In accordance with this invention, tliere is provided a heating apparatus useful for draxvina ultrahigh inolecular Nveight polyolefin fibers, the heating apparatus comprisins:
a first set of rolls;
a plurality of aligned ovens, the plurality of ovens having one encl ;p adjacent to the tirst set ot'rolls and an opposite end; and a second set of rolls adjacent to the opposite end of the plurality of ovens, the first and second set of rolls being adapted to provide the desireci drawing of the polyoletin fibers.

Also in accordance with this invention. there is provide a process for drawing ultrahigh molecular weight polyolefin fibers, the process comprisin~
passing the fibers through a heating apparatus, the heating apparatus comprisin":
a plurality of aligned ovens, the plurality of ovens having one end adjacent to the first set of rolls anci an opposite end; and a second set of rolls adjacent to the opposite end ol' the plurality of ovens. the first and second set of rolls being operated under conditions to provide the desired drawing of the polyolefin fibers and drawing the tibers between the first set of rolls and the second set of rolls to a predetertnined draw ratio.

It has been found that by niodifying the previous drawin~~
confilIuration by eliminating the second set of rolls and providing a series of hot=izontal ovens, polyolefin fibers such as polyethylene tibers -havint,~
elesirable ti properties can be obtained at lower capital eapense, lower opet-atinil, expense and at greater throubhpt.tt. Sueh fibers also have improved properties.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

This invention will become more fully understood ancl further advantages will become apparent when refet=ence is made to the followin~~
detailed description of the preferred embodiments of the invention and the accompanyinc, drawings, in which:

FIG I is a schematic vieNv of a typical oven confil-Iuration employed in the drawincy ofpolyethylene fibers.

FIG 2 is a schematic view of the oven conftguration of ihis invention which is useful in the drawing of taltrahieh moiecular weight polyethylene fibers.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The present invention comprises a heating apparatus for draxving ultrahigh molecular weight polyolefin fibers and a process for drawing such fibers.

For the purposes of the present invention, a fiber is an elongate body the length dimension of which is much greater that the transverse dinlensions of Nvidth and thickness. Accordingly, the term "fiber" ineludes one, or a plurality af. monofilament, multifilarllent, ribbon, strip, staple and other forms of chopped, cut or discontinuous fiber and the like having regLllar or irregular cross-sections. The term ''tibeC' includes a plurality of any of tfle fore~oin<~ or a combination thereof. A yarn is a continuous strand comprised of many fibers or filaments.

The cross-sections of fibers useful llerein may vary ividely. They may be circular, flat or oblong in cross-section. They may also be of irregular or rel-.1ular nlulti-lobal cross-section having one or nlore re"ular or irregular lobes projecting ti=om the linear or longitudinal axis of the tibers. It is preferred that the fibers be of substantially circular, flat or oblont, cross-section, most preferably substantially circular.

Ultrahigh molecular weight polyalefins useful in the present Invelltloll include polyethylene, polypropylene, poly(butene-1), poly(4-methyl-pentene-I), their copolynlers, blends and adducts. These polynlers typically have an intrinsic viscosity when measurecl in decalin at I35 C of ti=om about 5 to about 45 dl/b.

preferably, the feed yarn to be drawn comprises a polyethylene having 3p an intl-insic viscosity in decalitl of fi-om about 8 to 40 dl/g, nlore preferably fronl abaut 10 to 30 dl/~, and nlost preferably ffl=om about 12 to 30 dl/g.
Preferably, the yarn to be drawn cotnprises a polyethylene having fewer than about ane methyl group per thousand carbon atoms, nlorc preferably fewer than 0.5 methyl groups per thousand carbon atoms, and less than about I wt. % of other constituents. The ultrahigh molecular %veight polyoletins may contain small amounts. generally less than about 5 weibht percent, and pi-efei-abiy less than about 3 weight percent, of additives such as anti-oxidants, thermal stabilizers.
i colorants, tlow pronzoters, solvents, and the like.

The gel-spun polyethylene fibers to be drawn in the process of the invention may have been previously drawn. or they may be in an essentially undrawn state. The process for forming the gel-spun polyethylene teed yarn can t 0 be one of the processes described. for example, by any of U.S. Patent Numbers 4,551;296, 4,663,10 l. 5,741,451. and 6,448,659.

In the case of polyethylene suitable fbers are those of weight average molecular weiyht of at least about I 50,000. preferably at least abaut one million ts ancl more preferably between about two million anci about five million. ln the case of high molecular Nveight polypropylene fibers, these may have aNveit'ht average molecular weiglit at least about 200,000. prefei-abiy at least about one nlillion and more preferably at least about two inillion.

20 The tenacity of the feed yarn may range from about 2 to 76, preferably fi=om about 5 to 66, more preferably fi=om about 7 to 51, grams per denier ((r/d) as measured b), ASTM D2256-97 at a gause length of 10 inches (25.4 cm) ancl at a stt-ain rate of I00%/min.

25 In the following description reference is typically made to polyethylene fibers but it should be understood that such discloscn=e also applies to other polyolefin tibers.

With i-eference to Fig. 1. there is sliown in schematic view a typical ;u di-awin- operation 10 for ultrahigh moleculai- weight polyethylene yarn.
Yarn 12 is fed fi=om a source (not shown) and is passed over a tirst set 14 of rolls 16.
These rolls are typically heated to a desired temperature. The yarn 18 exiting the rolls is fed into four adjacent horizontal ovens, only two of which 20, 22 are shown. These ovens may be hot air circulatin(T ovens. The yarn 24 exitinc, the first set of ovens then passes over a second set 26 of rolls 28 ancl is drawn as yarn 30. Yar-n 30 is then fed into two n-rore adjacent ovens 32, 34, which may also be hot air circulating ovens, and the yarn 36 exiting oven 34 is then {ed over a third set 38 of rolls 40 and is again drawn to the desired amount. The tinished yarn 42 is then fed to a wind up station (not shown). By employing three sets of rolls, the frbers are subjected to a two stage drawing oper-ation.

With reference to Fig. 2, there is shoxvn in schematic viexv the heating apparatus 110 of this invention. Ultrahigh niolecular weight polyethylene yarn ro 112 is fed from a source (not shown) and is passed over- a first set 114 ot'cir-iven rolls 116. These rolls need not hc heated, although preferably the first few rolls ai-e not hcated and the remainint, rolls are heated to preheat the tibers prior to draxving. Although a total of 7 rolls is sliown in Fig. 2, the ninnber of rolls may be hic,her or lower. depending upon the desired configuration. The yarn 118 is fed into six adjacent liorizontal ovens 120, 122, 124, 126. 128, 130, all of which preferably are hot air circrilating ovens. The yarn is preferably not.supported in the ovens. Yarn 132 esiting last oven 130 then passes over a second set 134 of driven rolls 136, and is drawn into flnished yarn 138. The second set 134 of i-olls 136 should be cold so that the finished yarn is cooled to at least below about 90 C under tension to preserve its orientation and morphology. "1'hc number of rolls in second set 134 rnay be higher or lower tlian that the 7 r-olls shown in Fig. 2. and may be the same or different fi-orii the number of i-olls in tir=st roll set 114. Yarn 138 exiting second roll set 134 is then fed to a wind up station (not shown). By employing, only two sets of rolls. the tibers are sul?jected to a single stage drawina operation. The fibers are drawn between tirst t-oll set 114 and second r-oll set 134. The tension is adjusted so that the tiber-s rieed riot be supported in the ovens. Thus. there is no need for idler i-olls or- other supporting devices in the various ovens.

It can be seen that in the embodiment of this invention as shown in Fi-. 2 is a simpler design in which only two sets of rolls ai-e needed. The midclle set of rolls of the typical apparatus has been elirninated and replaced by two additional hot air ovens. In addition, not all of the inlet set of rolls need to be heated, and only the rolls closest to the oven entr=ance rnay be heated. For example. in one einbodiment with a nine set roll configuration only the last three rolls closest to the oven entrance are preferably heated.

In an alternate embodiinent, the center ovens (124; 126) are not .5 included in tlie heating apparatus, but the middle set of rolls of the typical configtu=ation is eliminated and only a total of four horizontal ovens (120.
122, 128, 130) are employed.

The number and size of the ovens employed in the heating apparatus of this invention may vary. Preferably there are either four or siX ovens alignecl in a liorizontal n-ianner. These ovens may vary in length. For example, each oven may be from about 10 to about 16 feet (3.05 to 4.88 meters) loncr, moi-e preferably froin about I I to about 13 feet (i.35 to 3.96 meters) lon;~,~.
Their xvicltli may be any suitable width.

It has been found by thermal imaging meast=ements and yarn speed meast=ements that in the typical drawing process the yarn that is heated by the Frst set of rolls has already cooled down before it reaches the tirst set of ovens (ovens 20, 22). As a result, part of the first oven set is used to heat the yarn rather than draNv the yarn. While the second set of rolls 26 does heat up the yarn again, the yarn has already begun to cool before it reaches the second set of ovens (ovens 32, 34). Similarly; part of the second oven set is used to heat the yarn rather than draw the yarn. This process in which the yarn is subject to heat.
cool, heat, cool steps lias been found to be not as effiicient as desired to achieve 2-5 the high draw ratio needed to obtain high ultimate tensile strenl;th (UTS). high tenacity and high modulus. In addition, the operation yield is reduceci ancl the capital cost is increased due to the need for three sets of rolls.

It has been found that by eliminating the niiddle set of rolls the yarn is not subject to the heat. cool, heat, cool process steps of the typical process.
Rather, the yarn maintains the heat needed for continuous drawing of the yarn.
Thus, yarn can be produced at higher speeds and the-yarn can have improved tenacity, modulus and ultimate tensile strength. The straight-Iine oven arrangement also increases operation efficiencv.

It can be seen that the heating apparatus perrnits a continuous, single stage drawing of the flber or yarn under heat Nvith only the trse of two sets of rolls. In addition, the apparatus and process of the invention can be operated to draw the fiber away from the masitntun draw ratio in order to reduce the potential for broken filaments.

The temperature and speed of the varn through the heating apparatus rnay be varied as desired. For example, one or more temperature controllecl zones may exist in the ovens, with each zone havinc, a temperature of fr=om about 125 C to about 160 C, more preferably fi=om about 130 C to about 150 C.
Preferably the temperature within a zone is controlled to vary less than -L2 C
(a total less than 4 C), more preferably less than :I:1 C (a total less than 2 C).

The drawing of yar-n generates heat. It is desired to have effective heat transmission between the yarn and the oven air. Preferably. the air circulation within the oven is in a turbulent state. The time-averaged air velocity in the vicinit), of the yarn is preferably from about I to about 200 meters/min.
mor=e preferably from about 2 to about 100 met:ers/min, and most pr-ef'erablv 1'rom about 5 to about 100 nieters/min.

As pointed out above, the yarn path in heatinc, apparatus 1l0 is preferably in an approxirnate straight line from inlet to outlet of the various ovens. The yarn tension profile may be adiusted by adjusting the speecl of the various rolls or by adjusting the oven temperature profile. Yarn tension may be inereased by increasing the difference between the speeds of consecutive driven rolls or decreasing the temperature in the oveiis. Preterably, the yarn tension in the ovens is approximately constant, or is increasing through the ovens.

Typically, multiple packages of gel-spun polyethylene yarns to be drawn are placed on a creel. Multiple varns ends are fed in parallel i7rom the creel through the first set of r-olls that set the feed speed into the drawin"; oven, ancl thence through the ovens and out to the second set of rolls that set the yarn exit speed and also cool the yarn under tension. The tension in the yarn during cooling is maintained suffiicient to hold the yarn at its drawn lensth neglecting thermal contraction.

The ovcrall draw ratio of the fibers inay vary, depending on the desired properties of the fibers. For example; the draw ratio may ran~e from about 1.1:1 to about 15:I, inore preferably troin about 1.2:I to about 10:1.
and inost preferably fi=om about 1.5:1 to about 10:1.

The speed of the fibers through the heatinlgr apparatus of this It~ invention may also vary. For example, typical lines speeds as measured by the speed of the second set of rolls may be fi=om about 20 to 100 nieters/min., morc preferably from about 30 to about 50 nietershnin. The line speed is also dependent on the desired denier of the yarn.

The apparatus and process of this invention are useful to produce Iiigh tenacity fibers. As used herein, the term " high tenacity fibers" means fibei-s which have tenacities equal to or greater than about 7 b/d. Preferably, these fibers have initial tensile moduli of at least about 150 g/d and energies-to-break of at least about 8.I/( as measw-ed by ASTM D2256. As used herein, the terms "initial tensile modulus' . "tensile modulus" and "niodulus" mean the inodulus of elasticity as measured by ASTM 2256 foi- a yarn.

Depending upon the formation technique, the draw ratio ancl temperatures, and other conditions, a variety of properties can be imparted to these fibers. The tenacity of the polyethylene fibers are at least about 7(1/cl.
preferably at least about 15 g/d, more preferably at least about 20 g/d, still more preferably at least about 25 g/d and most preferably at least about 30 g/d.
Siniilarly, the initial tensile modulus of the fibers. as measured by an lnstron tensile testing machine, is preferably at least about 300 g/d, more preferably at least about 500 g/d, still more preferably at least about 1,000 ~~/d and most preferably at least about 1.200 g/d. In a most= preferred embodiment, the fibers after drawing have a tenacity of at least about 35 -/d and a modulus of at least about 1.200 g/d. Many of the iilaments have melting points higher than the melting point of the polymer froni which they were formed. Thus, for example.

high molecuiar weight polyethylene of about 150.000; about one million and about two million molecular weight generally have melting points in the bulk of 138 C. The highly oriented polyethylene filaments made of these materials have melting points offrom about 7 C to about I3 C; higher. Thus, a slight increase in meltin ; point reflects the crystalline perfection and higher crystalline orientation of the tilaments as compared to the bulk polymer.

The resultatlt yarns may have any suitable denier. such as from about 50 to about 3000 denier, tnore preferably trom about 75 to about 2000 denier.
tn Examples of fine denier products include those of 75, 100. 130, 150. 180, 215, 375 and 435 denier. Examples of hi~h denier products include 900, 1100 and 1300 denier. The feed yarn denier is chosen depending on the desired clenier of the yarn. For example, to produce a 1300 denier yarn the feed yai-n ma;, be denier, and thus the draw ratio is about I.85:1. To produce a 375 denier product, t 5 the feed yarn may be 650, with a draw ratio of about 1.73.

The yarns produced by the apparatus and process of this invention niay be used in a variety of applications for which such yarns are suitable.
TheN' are useful in impact absorption and ballistic resistant products; such as bocly 20 armoi- (bullet resistant vests and the like), helrnets, aircraft shields and seats.
composite spoi-ts equipment, and in fishing line, sails, ropes. sutures and fabrics woven, knitted, braided or non-Nvoven). Typical non-Nvoven fabrics inciude a unidirectionally ai-ray of oriented yarns. Fabt-ics formed fi=om such yarns may be used together with a matrix resin. They yarns mav be blencleci 25 Nvith other types of yarns, both high strength and conventional stren(th yarns.

The following non-liniiting examples are presented to pi-ovicle a moi-e complete Luiderstanding of the invention. The specific techniques. conditions.
materials; propoi-tions and reported data set forth to illustrate the principles of the 30 invention are exemplary and should not be construed as limiting the scope of the invention.

t ~a EXAMPLES
Example 1 (comrmrative) Ultrahigh molecular xveight polyethylene fibers are drawn in a two stage draw in an oven configi=ation which includes a first set of four ovens and a i second set of two ovens, with a first set of rolls, an intermediate second set of i-olls and a third set of rolls in a inanner as depicted in Fig. I.

Tiie len;th of each oven is 12 feet (3.66 m) so the first set of 4 ovens totals 48 feet (14.63 rn) and the second set of ovens totals 24 feet (7.32 m).

The temperature of the rolls is as follows: first set = 125 C; seconci to set = I25 C and the third set = 25 C. The temperatures of the tirst and second sets of ovens are 150 C.

The starting denier is 2400 and the final denier is 1100. The draw ratio is 2:2:1. The speed of the first set of rolls is 16 rr-/min, the speed of the second set is 26 m/min and the speed of the third set ot rolls is 34 m/inin.

t~ The tenacity of the retiultin;,~ fiber is trom 35 to 37 ~~/d and the initial tensile modulus is i 150 to 1200 (Y/d.

Examnle 2 In this esample, ultrahibh molecular weibht polyethylene tibers are draxvn in a single stage draw in an oven contiguration Nvhich includes a set ofsia 20 horizontally aligned ovens, in a manner as depicted in Fig. 2. Only two sets of rolis are used, an inlet set (first set) and an exit set (second set).

The length of each oven is 12 feet (3.66 meters), so the total length of the 6 ovens is 72 feet (21.95 meters).

The tii-st set of rolls has a temperature of 125 C, and the second set ot-25 i-ol Is has a temperature of 25 C. The temperature of each oven is 150 C.

Il The starting denier is 2400 denier and the final denier is 1100 clenier ivitli a draw ratio 2:1:1. The speed for the first set of rolls is 20 m/min and the speed of the second set of rolls is 44 m/min.

The tenacity of the resultinl; fiber is from 37 to 39 a/d and the initial tensile modulus is 1250 to 1300 g/d.

It can be seen that the heatinb apparatus eniployed in Example 2 and operated in a manner of Example 2 provides tibers of higher tenaeity and modulus than the fibers of the oven configuration of' Example 1. Also. the line speed of Example 2 is significantly higher than in Esample I so that there is an l u increase in the productivity of the process.

It can be seen that the present invention provides an apparatus ancl method for forming drawn Lrltrahigh molecular weight polyolefin fibers ancl yarns, such as polyethylene fibers and yarns, in a cost-effective and operationaily fi=iendly manner. The resultant yarns have the desirable proper=ties to be usel'ul in a variety of demanding applications.

Havina thus described the invention in rather full detail, it will be understood that such cletail need not be strictly adhered to but that ftn=tlier 2t- changes and modifications may sug;est themselves to one skilled in the art, all I'allin- within the scope of the invention as detined by the subjoined claims.

Classifications
International ClassificationD02J1/22, D02J13/00
Cooperative ClassificationD02J1/22, D02J13/00
European ClassificationD02J1/22, D02J13/00
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
7 Dec 2010FZDEDead