Bleached hardwood (HW) kraft pulp and derived nanocellulosic structures were modified by a periodate oxidation followed by treatment with sodium bisulfite to yield the corresponding C2/3 sulfonates. The impact of this oxidative–reductive protocol on the chemical and physical properties of cellulose was evaluated by determining physical dimensions, functional groups, and their water absorbency properties. It was found that the water absorbency of cellulosic material can be enhanced by 8.0–199.0% with this oxidation/sulfonation protocol. Distinct differences were observed between sulfonated pulp fibers and nanocellulosic structures, with the latter exhibiting relatively higher water retention values (WRV).
KeywordsCellulose Nanostructures Periodate oxidation Sulfonation Water retention
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