Preparation of cellulose nanocrystal from tobacco-stem and its application in ethyl cellulose film as a reinforcing agent
The brittleness of ethyl cellulose (EC) film limited its full applications, and the addition of plasticizers is one of the most common methods to reduce its brittleness. However, the mechanical properties are normally dropped with the addition of plasticizers. Herein, cellulose nanocrystal (CNC) was chosen as a reinforcing agent to improve its mechanical properties. CNC was firstly extracted from the tobacco-stem and then modified by epoxidized soybean oil (ESO) via ring-opening grafting to obtain epoxidized soybean oil grafting CNC (ECNC). The grafting effect was evaluated by FTIR and XPS. After that, the films of ECNC/EC nanocomposites were prepared by the solution-casting method, and their mechanical, thermal and optical properties and fracture morphology were investigated. The results showed that at 4 phr loading of ECNC, the tensile strength of the nanocomposite film was up to 43.7 Mpa (about twice as much as that of the EC film plasticized by ESO), and the elongation at break was not influenced. Moreover, a higher thermal decomposition temperature was achieved for the ECNC/EC films. Besides, owing to the good dispersion, ECNC had no significant impact on the transparency, and the films presented high light transmittance in the visible light region.
KeywordsCellulose nanocrystal Ethyl cellulose film Reinforcing agent Modification
The work was supported by Natural Science Foundation of Hunan Province of China (No. 2018JJ2088), Scientific Research Foundation of Hunan Provincial Education Department of China (No. 15K034) and Postgraduate Research and Innovation Project of Hunan Province of China (Nos. CX20190839 and CX2018B735).
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Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
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