Compiled by Juli Case
Is carbon tow the same thing as denier?
They’re the same only in that they are a measurement of size. Denier is a standard length per unit weight measurement that is used to describe fiber or yarn. Technically, it’s the weight in grams of a standard length, which happens to be 9000 meters. You can count on a yarn that is described as having a smaller denier being a smaller yarn. For example, a 70 denier nylon yarn would be smaller than a 420 denier nylon yarn. Carbon is a fiber that is used a lot in the composite industry. A carbon tow is a bundle of continuous fibers. The size of the tow is described by the count of the filaments, with K indicating multiplication by 1000. In other words, a 7K carbon tow would contain 7000 carbon filaments. The issue with comparing tow to denier is that those carbon filaments can vary in size, usually from 5-10 microns.