Silkworms, after spinning their cocoons are gently steamed. The pupa passes away. Unfortunately, the pupa can not be allowed to reach maturity and cut its way free of the cocoon as it damages the single thread of spun silk.
To collect the silk the cocoons are placed in a small water trough located at the front of this machine and a large paint brush moves over the cocoons. This brush catches the single thread of each cocoon. This is then tied onto the previous thread and the machine begins to unravel the new cocoon. Once the continuous thread has been coiled onto the machine the process begins again with the next cocoon.
A very interesting piece of machinery, “Silk thread loom”. I took this photo while in China in April 2012 at a Silk Factory.