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Comparative Analysis of the Tensile and Biodegradable Performances of Some Selected Modified Starch Filled Polypropylene Blends
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Volume 2, 2015
Issue 2 (June)
Pages: 6-13   |   Vol. 2, No. 2, June 2015   |   Follow on         
Paper in PDF Downloads: 46   Since Aug. 28, 2015 Views: 1987   Since Aug. 28, 2015
H. C. Obasi, Department of Polymer and Textile Engineering, Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria.
F. C. Egeolu, University Library Unit, Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria.
O. D. Oparaji, Department of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering, Florida State University, Tallahassee, USA.
This study presents the utilization of starch from botanical resources for the development of biodegradable materials. A thermoplastic starch obtained from cassava starch and potato starch was successfully prepared using glycerol as a plasticizer. Polypropylene matrix filled with starch along with a compatibilizer was prepared by a melt-mixing technique, using an injection molding machine at different starch contents (0 to 50 wt. %) whereas compatibilizer was used at 10 wt. % based on starch content. The effects of starch content, plasticizer and compatibilizer on the tensile, water absorption, and biodegradable properties of starch/PP blends have been investigated. Results showed that plasticized starch content exhibited an inverse relationship with the tensile strength, elongation at break and directly related to Young’s modulus, water absorption index and weight loss of the starch/PP blends. However, the addition of PP-g-MA to the blends improved all the properties under study; though tensile strength and elongation at break were still lower than the neat PP. On comparison, potato starch/PP blends exhibited higher tensile, lower biodegradable and higher water absorption properties than cassava starch/PP blends due to fibre, amylose-amylopectin ratio and phosphorus contents. Biodegradation products had no adverse effects on the growth of soya bean and wheat plants. The morphology of the blends was studied using SEM and compatibilized blends showed better results.
Polypropylene, Starch, Tensile Properties, Water Absorption, Biodegradation, Compatibilizer, Plasticizer
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