Synthesis and characterization of AN-g-soy for sustainable polymer composites

Vijay Kumar Thakur, Michael R. Kessler*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)


Biobased materials are rapidly emerging as alternatives to petroleum-based materials because of rising environmental awareness and augmented consumption of nondegradable polymers. In the present work, the surface characteristics of biorenewable soy flour (SOY) were tailored via free radical-induced graft copolymerization of acrylonitrile (AN) to develop novel materials for multifunctional applications. A number of reaction parameters were optimized to maximize the level of grafting. The synthesized acrylonitrile-grafted soy (AN-g-SOY) copolymers were characterized using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). Polymer composites were prepared using SOY/AN-g-SOY as reinforcement and poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) as the matrix. Dynamic mechanical analysis results showed that acrylonitrile-grafted SOY exhibited significantly enhanced storage modulus compared to polymer composites reinforced with pristine soy flour.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2454-2460
Number of pages7
JournalACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering
Issue number10
Publication statusPrint publication - 3 Sept 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Composites
  • Dynamic mechanical analysis
  • Graft copolymerization
  • Soy
  • Sustainable materials


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