MICROSCOPIC EXAMINATION OF WOOL FIBERS IN PRAMENKA FOR THE QUALITY CLASSIFICATION OF RAW WOOL
AbstractIn Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, as well as in most Balkan countries, wool is a major environmental problem. After sheep shearing, farmers usually leave the wool at the shear sites, providing poorly degradable organic waste. The purchase price of such untreated wool is as low as its quality. By this research, we have tried to draw attention, from another aspect, to the quality of wool fibers of certain parts of the body, which is ultimately very important in the textile industry and in the selection of wool for further processing. The cuticle is made from cornfied cells, flakes, located on the surface of wool fibers. One of the significant roles of the cuticle is the protective. Namely, the cuticle protects the wool fibers from various external factors, whether mechanical or physic-chemical (such as ammonia evaporation in poorly maintained facilities, etc.), which can damage the fleece and thus make it less quality. We have found some differences in the flakes position and shape in the wool fibers we investigated, depending on part of the body from which they were sampled. However, by microscopic analyses of samples taken from the root of the tail, we have found that the flakes were much smaller and finer in structure than the arrangement and appearance of the cornified flakes from the rump. In this study, we have compared the appearance and arrangement of flakes of cuticle, which is very important in assessing the quality of wool and its further use as a raw material.