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(a) What are synthetic fibres? Name any two synthetic fibres.(b) Why have synthetic fibres become more popular than natural fibres?
(a) Synthetic fibres are also known as man-made fibres which are made up of small units of chemical substances which are joined together. Such small units combine to form a large single unit called a polymer. Hence, a polymer is made of many repeating units. Polymers also occur in nature.
Example: Rayon and Nylon are synthetic fibres.
Rayon is obtained by the chemical treatment of wood pulp or cellulose.
Nylon is the first fully synthetic fibre. It was prepared from coal, water and air.
(b) Synthetic fibres become more popular than natural fibres because they are cheaper than natural fibres. The raw materials for synthetic fibres are mainly petrochemicals such as coal. Hence, the manufacturing of synthetic fibres helps in the conservation of forests. They are used in the manufacture of a variety of household articles such as ropes, buckets, furniture, containers, etc. to highly specialized uses in aircrafts, ships, space crafts, healthcare, etc.
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