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Textiles are ubiquitous materials that many of us take for granted in our everyday lives. We rely on our clothes to protect us from the environment, for modesty, to enhance our appearance and reflect our personality. Beyond these traditional applications, high-performance fibres have been specifically developed for more demanding roles in protective garments, industrial work-wear, car tyres, parachutes and artificial arteries. This is the only book to describe the chemistry of textile fibres at a level appropriate for 'A' level students and first-year undergraduates following courses in textile science and technology. Readers with a background in chemistry and an interest in the principles of functional fibre development will also find it to be of value. The book explains the characteristics required for polymers to be fibre-forming, the general physical properties needed from textile fibres, and the chemistry of important natural and synthetic fibres. The book also deals with the essential chemistry of "high-performance" fibres that possess functionalities beyond those of materials traditionally used for apparel. Later chapters describe methods of fibre enhancement and fibre blending.