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K. Błędzki, A. Jaszkiewicz

Biocomposites based on polylactide reinforced with the fibers of natural origin

Polimery 2008, No 7/8, 564


Summary

The effect of the type of fiber reinforcement - regenerated cellulose (viscose) or banana reinforcing fibers (abaca, Fig. 2) - on mechanical properties of biocomposites, based on polylactide (PLA) as polymer matrix, has been studied. Biocomposites containing 15 or 30 wt. % of fibers were prepared by two-stage extrusion consisting in coating of continuous filament with PLA layer and further homogenization of the system (Fig. 1). Mechanical properties' evaluation encompassed the results of quasi-static tensile and bending tests as well as notched impact strength investigation (Table 2). Polypropylene composites containing 30 wt. % of the fibers mentioned were used as control systems. Adhesion mechanism at the border of fiber and PLA and the orientation of the fiber isolated from the composite were interpreted on the basis of scanning electron microscopy (SEM, Fig. 3 and 5) and optical microscopy (Fig. 6 and 7) results. The results show that the addition of any of both types of fiber reinforcements increase composite's stiffness and strength. 30 % part of fiber is especially advantageous. Significant improvement in notched impact strength (3.6-fold) of PLA/viscose (70:30) system is especially noteworthy. The results obtained show the possibility of preparation of environmentally friendly engineering plastics consisted of polymer matrix and fiber reinforcement, both based on natural resources.


Key words: polylactide, natural fibers, biocomposites, regenerated cellulose, banana fibers, mechanical properties


e-mail: kutech@uni-kassel.de


K. Błędzki, A. Jaszkiewicz

Biocomposites based on polylactide reinforced with the fibers of natural origin