, Volume 19, Issue 6, pp 1913–1921 | Cite as

Facile fabrication of transparent cellulose films with high water repellency and gas barrier properties

Original Paper


Transparent and water repellent gas barrier cellulose films were fabricated by surface modification of alkali/urea regenerated cellulose (AUC) films by soaking in cationic alkylketene dimer (AKD) dispersion, drying, and heating. Highly water repellent and excellent gas barrier properties were obtained for AKD-treated and heated AUC films due to covering of the film surfaces by hydrophobic AKD components. The maximum AKD content of the films was 0.2 %. Oxygen transmission rates for AKD-treated AUC films at 0 % relative humidity (RH) were less than 0.0005 mL m−2 day−1 kPa−1, the lowest detection limit of the instrument. Water contact angles on the AUC film increased from 50 to 110° after AKD treatment, and water uptake (immersion in water for 6 days) decreased from 92 to 20 %. Moreover, oxygen permeability decreased from 0.56 and 5.8 to 0.13 and 2.1 mL μm m−2 day−1 kPa−1 at 50 and 75 % RH, respectively, when the AKD content of the film was increased from 0 to 0.2 %. The present AKD-treated AUC film also had high light transparency (88 % at 600 nm), tensile strength (168 MPa), elongation at break (29 %), and work of fracture (37 MJ m−3). FT–IR analysis showed that AKD components were still present as major species on the AKD-treated film surfaces without hydrolysis at 2 months after conditioning the films at 23 °C and 50 % RH, indicating that such AKD molecules contributed to the hydrophobic nature of the AKD-treated AUC films.


Regenerated cellulose AKD Water repellency Oxygen barrier Alkali/urea solution 



This study was supported by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS): Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research S (21228007), and Research Fellowships for Young Scientists (24-7663).

Supplementary material

10570_2012_9790_MOESM1_ESM.doc (1.6 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 1600 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate School of Agricultural and Life SciencesThe University of TokyoBunkyo-ku, TokyoJapan

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