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What are the types of nylon fiber?

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There are many types of nylon fabric available in the market:

• Nylon 6:
Nylon 6 fiber or polycaprolactam was developed by Paul Schlack. It is produced using the ring-opening polymerization of caprolactam in the presence of water vapor and an acid catalyst. Though sometimes nylon 6 is used to make fabrics but its popularity in making fabrics is less than Nylon 6,6.

• Nylon 6, 6:
Nylon 6,6 is produced by combining hexamethylenediamine and a form of dicarboxylic acid. The resulting salt from the reaction is either melted to form fibers or crystallized for purification purposes. Nylon 6,6 polymer is known to be among one of the first fully synthetic polymers. Nylon 6,6 was patented by Wallace Carothers with the use of amide.

• Nylon 4/6:
Nylon 46 is a type of aliphatic polyamide or high heat resistant polyamide or nylon. It is formed by the polycondensation process of two monomers, one containing 4 carbon atoms, 1,4-diaminobutane (putrescine), and the other containing 6 carbon atoms, adipic acid. Because of the number of carbon in raw materials, it has nylon 46 as its name. Compared to nylon 6 and nylon 6,6, nylon 46 has a higher melting point and hence is used in applications that withstand high temperatures.
This polymer is only supplied by a Dutch Multinational corporation named DSM and is marketed under the trade name Stanyl. This polymer is not commonly used in fabrics rather used in manufacturing engine components such as transmissions, brakes, and air cooling systems.

• Nylon 510:
Nylon 510 is developed by DuPont, from pentamethylene diamine and sebacic acid. It was originally intended as a substitute for nylon 6,6 but it was expensive to make hence the mass production was prohibited for fabric purposes. Now, it is used in industrial and scientific applications.

• Nylon 1,6:
Nylon 1,6 is not a condensation polymer but is produced from adiponitrile, formaldehyde, and water with the help of acid catalysis. Nylon 1,6 was developed by DuPont in the 1950s.

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