The set and mechanical behaviour of partially processed leather dried under strain

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The stress-strain behaviour of partially processed leather which has been dried under a range of uni-axial strains has been investigated. It has been found that the dependence of the tensile modulus on the strain applied during drying is non-linear, increasing slowly at first then more rapidly later on. A two-dimensional microstructural model based on an idealised fibre network can describe this non-linear relationship and account for differences between samples. High values of set are produced by drying under strain and some of this set is retained even after soaking in water. It is suggested that this is due to the formation of stable crosslinks between the chemically modified collagen fibres that comprise leather.

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