The Impact of Filler Geometry on Polylactic Acid-Based Sustainable Polymer Composites

Karol Leluk, Stanisław Frąckowiak, Joanna Ludwiczak, Tomasz Rydzkowski, Vijay Kumar Thakur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Recently, biocomposites have emerged as materials of great interest to the scientists and industry around the globe. Among various polymers, polylactic acid (PLA) is a popular matrix material with high potential for advanced applications. Various particulate materials and nanoparticles have been used as the filler in PLA based matrix. One of the extensively studied filler is cellulose. However, cellulose fibres, due to their hydrophilic nature, are difficult to blend with a hydrophobic polymer matrix. This leads to agglomeration and creates voids, reducing the mechanical strength of the resulting composite. Moreover, the role of the various forms of pure cellulose and its particle shape factors has not been analyzed in most of the current literature. Therefore, in this work, materials of various shapes and shape factors were selected as fillers for the production of polymer composites using Polylactic acid as a matrix to fill this knowledge gap. In particular, pure cellulose fibres (three types with different elongation coefficient) and two mineral nanocomponents: precipitated calcium carbonate and montmorillonite were used. The composites were prepared by a melt blending process using two different levels of fillers: 5% and 30%. Then, the analysis of their thermomechanical and physico-chemical properties was carried out. The obtained results were presented graphically and discussed in terms of their shape and degree of filling.

Original languageEnglish
Article number149
JournalMolecules
Volume26
Issue number1
Early online date31 Dec 2020
DOIs
Publication statusFirst published - 31 Dec 2020

Keywords

  • calcium carbonate
  • cellulose fibres
  • montmorillonite
  • polylactic acid composites

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