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Nanofibrillated cellulose in wood coatings: mechanical properties of free composite films


Composite films of nanofibrillated cellulose (NFC), derived from beech wood pulp, and 8 commercial acrylic and alkyd polymeric binders were prepared. Structural and mechanical properties of the composites were assessed by microscopy and tensile tests before and after aging. While the NFC was compatible with acrylate polymers, it formed undesired aggregates during processing with the alkyd polymers. Modulus of elasticity, tensile strength, and elongation at break of prepared films depended on the initial properties of the neat polymers. All composite films were stiffer, stronger, and less extensible than the corresponding neat polymer films. The reinforcing effect increased with increasing NFC content. Aging by artificial weathering strongly affected the mechanical properties of neat polymer and composite films. Alkyd films became, compared to the acrylate films, much stiffer and more brittle after artificial weathering. The results of the mechanical tests are regarded as promising step to use NFC as novel component in wood coatings.

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This work was financially supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF) within the National Research Programme 66 (NRP66) “Resource Wood” Project-Nr 406640-136558). We kindly thank Anja Huch for performing SEM characterization. We are grateful for valuable comments and discussions on the manuscript with Ingo Burgert. We also thank the companies mentioned in the experimental part for providing the coating and cellulose raw materials.

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Correspondence to Franziska Grüneberger.

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Grüneberger, F., Künniger, T., Zimmermann, T. et al. Nanofibrillated cellulose in wood coatings: mechanical properties of free composite films. J Mater Sci 49, 6437–6448 (2014).

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  • Composite Film
  • Bacterial Cellulose
  • Polymer Emulsion
  • Neat Polymer
  • Wood Coating