What is Polyamide Fabric: Polyamide Material, Properties

Content Polyamide Properties
Fabric name
Polyamide fabric
Similar Fabrics
Nylon fabric
Polyamide monomers
Moisture-wicking abilities
Heat retention abilities
Fabric wrinkle resistance
Light permanency
Biggest exporting/producing country
Recommended washing methods and temperatures
By hand or washing machine, warm or cold

1. What is polyamide fabric (polyamide material)?

Polyamide fabric refers to a variety of fabrics which composed of polyamide monomers. Nylon is one of the most famous forms of Polyamide fabric. It was because DuPont corporation called the polyamide fabric they invented the nylon that the world is accustomed to calling it nylon instead of polyamide fabric. However, the most standardized name of it is polyamide fabric beyond doubt.

Polyamide fabric was developed by Carothers (a distinguished scientist in the United States) and a scientific research team under his leadership. It is the first synthetic fiber in the world, which has renewed the appearance of textiles. Polyamide fabric is a breakthrough in the fiber industry and is also a very important milestone in polymer chemistry.

Polyamide fabric is known for its excellent abrasion resistance and light in weight, so it is the ideal fabric for sportswear, swimwear, aerobics outfit, jacket and mountaineering suit. Polyamide fabric is often blended or woven with other fibers to increase the strength and fastness of the fabric. In addition to applications in clothing and accessories, it is also widely used in industries such as transmission belts, hoses, ropes, fishing nets, parachutes, etc.

Clothing made from polyamide fabric
Clothing made from polyamide fabric

1.1 Advantages and disadvantages of polyamide fabric

1. High – strength and good abrasion resistance.
2. Light – weight and low density. It is heavier than polypropylene and acrylic fabrics in synthetic fiber fabrics but lighter than cotton fabric and viscose fibers.
3. Excellent elasticity.
4. Good dyeability, which is better than polyester.
5. Good resistance to alkali and reducing agents.
6. Low-temperature resistance. Nylon filament has good low-temperature resistance. Even the temperature is below -70 ° C, its elasticity will not change much.

1. Low heat retention abilities. It will turn yellow after 5 hours under150 ° C, the strength and elongation will decrease significantly. People need to pay more attention to taking care of polyamide fabric.
2. Poor light permanency. The biggest disadvantage of this fabric is that it has poor light permanency. The fabric will turn yellow after long time exposure, and the strength will decrease. So it is not suitable for outdoor applications.
3. Low Moisture-wicking abilities.
4. Poor acid and oxidant resistance.
5. Easy to generate static electricity.

2. History of polyamide fabric

In 1927, Dr. C.M.A.Sti-ne, the director of the DuPont Chemistry Division, foresaw the need for more basic organic chemistry research to ensure the future development of the company. Wallace H. Carothers (1896-1937) was persuaded to join DuPont.

In 1928, DuPont corporation established the Department of Basic Chemistry and Dr. Carothers was hired as the head of this Department. In 1935, DuPont corporation made polyamide from adipic acid and hexamethylene successfully. Because both adipic acid and hexamethylene contain 6 carbon atoms, the polymer was then called polyamide 66 (or nylon 66). Then this polymer was melted and stretched into fibers by extrusion.

In 1939 DuPont corporation produced polyamide fabric on an industrial scale, they called their products “Nylon”. Nylon is the earliest synthetic fiber. By May 1940, textiles made from nylon fabrics were popular throughout the United States.

In 1945, nylon was commonly used in defense industries such as manufacturing parachutes, military uniforms, and other military-use products.

Because polyamide has many advantages, it developed very quickly after World War Two and became one of the most importantly synthetic fibers in the world. Today, polyamide fabrics represent about 12 percent of global synthetic fiber production.

The inventer of Polyamide Fabric - DuPont Corporation
The inventer of Polyamide Fabric - DuPont Corporation

3. How is polyamide fabric made?

Although the methods used to make polyamide fabrics can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, most of their ingredients are derived from polyamide monomers, the most common source of which is petroleum. As we all know, petroleum is a non-renewable resource, and this basic ingredient extracted from petroleum is a pollutant, which means that the process of producing polyamide fabrics cannot be considered environmentally friendly.

Nylon 6,6 is the most common type of polyamide fabric. This fabric is made by mixing diamine with adipic acid. When these two compounds come into contact with each other, a chemical reaction occurs and the diamine acid is reformed into a repeating chain of monomers, which called a polymer. When the polymer is heated, it will melt.

The molten polyamide will harden immediately after being extruded through a spinneret, and it is then loaded onto a spool called a spool.

After the polyamide fiber is loaded on the spool, it is stretched to increase its elasticity and strength. The fibers are tightly wound around the bobbin, and after this process, the polyamide fibers can be spun into a fabric.

4. Where is polyamide fabric produced?

1. Polyamide fabric was invented and manufactured on a large scale in the United States. However, In the 1970s and 1980s, a large portion of textile production was transferred from the United States to China and other East Asian countries due to the advantages of cheap labor and raw materials in developing countries. Overall, polyamide fabric continues to take a smaller and smaller share of the global fiber production market share.

2. The rapid growth of China’s polyamide production is the main driving force for the global polyamide production in recent years. The market share of China’s polyamide output increased from 16.7% in 2004 to 58.2% in 2014, making it the world’s largest polyamide fabric producer today.

3. India

4. Brazil

5. Pakistan


Polyamide fabric is used in apparel, industry, and national defense
Polyamide fabric is used in apparel, industry, and national defense

Polyamide is mainly used for synthetic fibers, the most prominent advantage of which is that it has higher abrasion resistance than all other fibers. Its abrasion resistance is 10 times higher than cotton and 20 times higher than wool. A few polyamide fibers are added to the blended fabric which will improve its abrasion resistance of fabric. When the fabric is stretched to 3-6% its normal size, the elastic recovery rate of it can reach 100%, and it can withstand tens of thousands of times of bending without breaking.

The strength of polyamide fiber is 1-2 times higher than cotton, 4-5 times higher than wool, and 3 times higher than viscose fiber. However, polyamide fiber has a poor heat resistance and light permanency. The clothes made from polyamide fabric are not as stiff as polyester. Also, the clothing made from nylon-66 and nylon-6 has poor hygroscopicity and dyeability too.

Polyamide filaments are mostly used in the textile industries. There are various fabrics woven from pure polyamide filaments, such as nylon taffeta. It has the characteristics of smooth appearance, firmness, and durability at a moderate cost. However, the disadvantages of this fabric are easy to wrinkle but difficult to recover. Nylon taffeta is mostly used for casual clothes, feather dress, summer dress, shirt or raincoat.

Raincoat can be made from polyamide fabric
Raincoat can be made from polyamide fabric

Polyamide staple fibers are woven with wool or other chemical fiber products to make a variety of durable clothing, which have the characteristics and advantages of each fiber. For example, the fabric, which made from 15% polyamide and 85% viscose, is double and light than other fabric.

Polyamide products are popular around the world. They are excellent substitutes for steel, iron, copper and other metals, which makes them become the important engineering plastics. It is because polyamides are non-toxic, lightweight and durable with excellent abrasion resistance and corrosion resistance that they are widely used in the machinery, chemical, instrument, automobile and other industries for manufacturing bearings, gears, pump blades and other parts.

Polyamide has high strength after melt spinning. So it is mainly used as medical sutures, cables, transmission belts, and fishing nets. In national defense, people often use Polyamide fabric as the material for a parachute.

Nylon for manufacturing parachute
Nylon for manufacturing parachute

6. How to take care of polyamide fabric?

1. You can wash polyamide fabric by hand or washing machine in warm or cold water, however, the temperature of the water should not exceed 40 degrees.

2. Do not rub hard when washing by hand.

3. After washing the light-colored fabric, it should be flush water for several times, otherwise, it will easily turn yellow.

4. Don’t hang them out in the sunshine, Polyamide fabric should be dried in the shade.

5. Nylon has poor heat resistance, so if you want to iron the fabric, it must be steamed at low temperatures.

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