Jute is generally not dyed with reactive dye though it is a cellulosic fiber. Reactive dye is extensively used to dye cotton, viscose and other cellulosic fibers whereas jute is dyed with basic dye. This paper presents a novel approach to dye the jute fiber with reactive dye after treating with chitosan. Jute fabric was treated with chitosan solution at different con- centrations (0.5%, 1%, 2%, 3% and 4%) and then dyed with reactive dye. The depth and fastness of shade of dyed fabric were analyzed by comparing the chitosan treated samples with untreated dyed fabric samples. It has been found that, the dyebath exhaustion is increased with the increment of chitosan concentrations. The exhaustion percentages have found 36.79%, 41.59%, 48.33%, 54.46% and 58.75% for the fabric treated with 0.5%, 1%, 2%, 3% and 4% chitosan solution respectively, while the exhaustion of dyebath is only 23.15% for untreated fabric. The K/S values (at λmax = 540 nm) of dyed samples have found 4.93, 6.77, 10.5, 14.07, 15.57 and 2.37 for 0.5%, 1%, 2%, 3%, 4% and untreated fabric respectively. The color fastness to washing and rubbing of the dyed fabrics was also evaluated. In case of dry rubbing, both types of fabric have shown almost similar fastness ratings. However, chitosan treated fabrics have shown inferior fastness rating in case of wet rubbing and washing, particularly for the fabrics at higher chitosan concentrations.
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