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Journal of Polymers and the Environment

, Volume 19, Issue 3, pp 637–676 | Cite as

Biodegradable Polymers- A Review on Recent Trends and Emerging Perspectives

  • Gisha E. Luckachan
  • C. K. S. Pillai
Original Paper

Abstract

Recent trends in biodegradable polymers indicate significant developments in terms of novel design strategies and engineering to provide advanced polymers with comparably good performance. However, there are several inadequacies in terms of either technology or cost of production especially in the case of applications in environmental pollution. So, there is a need to have a fresh perspective on the design, properties and functions of these polymers with a view to developing strategies for future developments. The paper reviews the present state-of-art on biodegradable polymers and discusses the salient features of the design and properties of biodegradable polymers. Special emphasis is given to the problems and prospects of (1) approaches adopted to make non-biodegradable synthetic polymers such as polyethylene biodegradable and (2) biodegradable polymers and copolymers made from renewable resources especially poly(lactic acid) based polymers and copolymers which are emerging as the candidate biodegradable materials for the future.

Keywords

Biodegradable polymers Environmental aspects Recent trends Future perspectives Polyethylene Poly(lactic acid) 

Notes

Acknowledgments

Thanks are due to Ms. Radhika Raveedran for help in the preparation of the Figures.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Institute for Interdisciplinary Research and Technology (formerly Regional Research Laboratory)CSIRThiruvananthapuramIndia

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