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1. a Mexican agave plant, Agave sisalana, cultivated for its large fleshy leaves, which yield a stiff fibre used for making rope
2. the fibre of this plant
3. any of the fibres of certain similar or related plants


A durable natural fiber used as a floor covering, derived from leaves of the sisal plant.



(also sisal hemp), a stiff, coarse natural fiber obtained from the leaves of the agave plant (Agava sisolana), which itself is sometimes given the name “sisal.” The fibers are separated from the fresh leaves without any special treatment; the fiber yield is about 3.5 percent. The elementary sisal fibers are 2-2.5 mm long, whereas the fibers used for industry are 0.6-1.5 m long. The fibers are shiny and yellowish. Sisal is not as sturdy as abaca and is more brittle than hemp. It is used to make ropes, nets, bristles, and other items. World sisal production is gradually being curtailed owing to the increased use of synthetic fibers. In 1972 production was about 604,000 tons. The main exporters of sisal are Tanzania, Kenya, Angola, and Brazil. The leaves of the related species A. fourcroydes yield the fiber henequén, which is produced in Mexico and Cuba.


Siniagin, I. I. Tropicheskoe zemledelie. Moscow, 1968. [23–1053–]


Agave sisalina. An agave of the family Amaryllidaceae indigenous to Mexico and Central America; a coarse, stiff yellow fiber produced from the leaves is used for making twine and brush bristles.


An organic fiber from the leaves of the sisal plant; used in making rope and cordage; sometimes mixed with plaster.


(Streams and Iteration in a Single Assignment Language) A general-purpose single assignment functional programming language with strict semantics, automatic parallelisation and efficient arrays. Outputs a dataflow graph in IF1 (Intermediary Form 1). Derived from VAL, adds recursion and finite streams. Pascal-like syntax. Designed to be a common high-level language for numerical programs on a variety of multiprocessors.

Implementations exist for Cray X-MP, Cray Y-MP, Cray-2, Sequent, Encore Alliant, dataflow architectures, transputers and systolic arrays.

Defined in 1983 by James McGraw et al, Manchester University, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Colorado State University and DEC. Revised in 1985. First compiled implementation in 1986. Performance superior to C and competitive with Fortran, combined with efficient and automatic parallelisation.

Not to be confused with SASL.

E-mail: John Feo <>, Rod Oldehoeft <>.

David C. Cann has written an Optimising SISAL Compiler (OSC) which attempts to make efficient use of parallel processors such as Crays.

Latest version: 12.0, SISAL 1.2.

["A Report on the SISAL Language Project", J.T. Feo et al, J Parallel and Distrib Computing 10(4):349-366 (Dec 1990)].
References in periodicals archive ?
Auditing and characterisation of sisal processing waste: a bioresource for value addition.
With respect to the closed season of 2013 there are three regions with high catchability values: one on the southwestern part of the peninsula opposite the port of Champoton; the second on the central part of the continental shelf, to the north of Sisal and Progreso; and the third on the northeastern part of the Yucatan Peninsula, along the coast of San Felipe and north of the El Cuyo.
Sisal will invest more and more in innovative mobile solutions, aiming to meet and anticipate new market trends and evolution in our players' lifestyles.
95 for a 2-by-3 Sisal Almond rug to $799 for 9-by-12 Lanao rug, which is made of abaca.
Somewhat scratchy unless mixed with softer fibers, sisal weaves into flat or fat designs.
While the company has long used natural fibers in vehicle manufacturing including flax, hemp, sisal, and coconut (see AD & P June 2001 or www.
Some of the lesser toxic choices include sisal, jute, hemp wool and other natural fibers.
Walls are lined with sisal, a renewable material that effectively absorbs the impact of wheelchairs.
Owned and operated by a French family in Madagascar for more than 80 years, this sisal farm is also a significant nature preserve as home to ring-tailed lemurs and a bevy of other exotic animals.
K-M is also showing a new version of its mixhead for LFI (long-fiber injection) technology that allows for the use of natural fibers such as flax, hemp, or sisal in place of glass.
Sisal,manila,oakum and pitch Tarred hemp, sail-twine, the names were rich.