A novel, small-volume vertically arranged spin bath was successfully developed for an air gap lyocell-type spinning process. A maximum regeneration bath length with a minimum free volume characterizes the concept of the new spin bath. Using the ionic liquid (IL) 1,5-diazabicyclo[4.3.0]non-5-enium acetate [DBNH][OAc], the spin bath showed very good spinning performances of IL-cellulose dopes at high draw ratios and spinning duration for single filament spinning experiments. Using this new device, it was possible to get a step further in the optimization of the Ioncell® process and simulate a process closed loop operation by performing single filament spinning in IL/H2O mixtures. Good dope spinnability and preserved fibers mechanical properties were achieved in a coagulation bath containing up to 30 wt% IL. It is only at 45 wt% of IL in the bath that the spinnability and fibers mechanical properties started to deteriorate. The fibers fibrillar structure was less pronounced in IL-containing spinning bath in comparison to a pure water bath. However, their crystallinity after washing was preserved regardless of the spinning bath composition. The results presented in this work have a high relevance to the upscaling of emerging IL-based cellulose dissolution and spinning processes.
- renewable polymers