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3 types of yarn testing: Burning, solubility, or the SenoLab?

Learn about yarn identification and three ways to analyze yarn compositions by conducting burning and solubility tests and by using the SenoLab.

Hannah Szynal
Hannah Szynal

Feb 05, 2023

With the global textile market predicted to grow at a CAGR of 4.0% from 2022 to 2030, the need for easy and affordable yarn analysis is increasing. Identifying the composition and quality of fibers and yarn lays the foundation for correct processing of textiles later in the supply chain. Processing, treating, and recycling textile materials based on their raw components can make the textile industry more sustainable.

Senorics’ technology allows you to test yarns quickly, non-destructively and on the go. But which other yarn and fabric testing methods are used in spinning mills around the world?

Textile_spinning_mill_yarn© [junrong] / Adobe Stock

Yarn testing methods conducted in labs

When analyzing the composition and quality of yarn, different tests can be of help, for example solubility and burning tests. Analysis is commonly carried out in laboratories and often requires companies to send samples to an external lab. It can then take several days for the results to become available. Additionally, samples are destroyed during the process due to the nature of the testing methods. Other companies trust in internal laboratories, however, equipping and staffing such facilities comes at a high cost. But what exactly are burning and solubility tests and how do they differ?

Burning tests

During burning tests, the fibers within the yarn are identified by noting the smell, color, shape of ash, and the speed at which the fibers burn down. As every fiber behaves differently, this is a simple and reliable way of testing yarns. Did you know that cotton fibers smell like burning paper and that silk, wool, and viscose smell like burned hair?

Solubility tests

There are chemical differences that exist between yarn fibers. Solubility tests allow you to distinguish them in a more fundamental way than you would be able to with burning tests. Testing via solvent is especially effective when it is used for eliminating and cross-checking.

So, for example...

  • When treating silk and wool with cold concentrated hydrochloric acid, silk fibers dissolve, but wool fibers do not.
  • If you were to use sodium hydroxide solution instead, it would break down the silk and wool samples, as it is known to destroy animal fibers.

How Senorics simplifies yarn testing

The SenoLab enables you to analyze yarn wherever you are. You can test incoming yarn, monitor quality and composition on the production floor, and conduct final quality checks effortlessly. The solution fits into the palm of your hand and provides you with analysis results within seconds.

For example, it enables you to identify yarn compositions like cotton or polyester effortlessly and non-destructively. Additionally, it allows you to quantify the material composition, telling you the amount of fiber detectable in your yarn, e.g., 22% cotton and 78% polyester. You simply need to place the handheld device on the yarn, and the analysis starts at the touch of a button.

SenoLab_analyzing_yarnSenoCorder analyzing yarn with SenoApp

Comparing current methods with Senorics' technology

Now that we have looked at laboratory analysis methods and the SenoLab, it is time to conclude. What are the advantages and disadvantages of each testing method? Will all the methods we covered today stand the test of time, or do some outshine others?

All the described methods have their place in the world of yarn analysis and are useful depending on their application. Tests conducted in laboratories, such as burning or solubility tests, have the advantage of being very accurate. There is a reason that they take several days, and when a very high accuracy is needed and there is no time pressure, these kinds of tests will remain a great choice.

However, in many other situations where all you need is a reliable result that you can access instantly, mobile yarn analysis is becoming more and more desirable to spinning mills. It saves money, time, and resources and can be used to conduct analysis at any point along the supply chain.


If you want to learn about yarn composition analysis, head to our website or contact us at


Hannah Szynal

I joined Senorics in October 2019 and am the company's Sales and Marketing Manager. My main responsibilities are strategic planning and leading the team towards reaching the company’s goals. I think that a task is only completed successfully when everyone involved had fun working on it. I’m also a real data nerd.


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