Thermal characterization and electrical properties of Fe-modified cellulose long fibers and micro crystalline cellulose
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Thermal properties of polylactic acid (PLA) filled with Fe-modified cellulose long fibers (CLF) and microcrystalline cellulose (MCC) were studied using thermo gravimetric analysis (TG), differential scanning calorimetry, and dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA). The Fe-modified CLFs and MCCs were compared with unmodified samples to study the effect of modification with Fe on electrical conductivity. Results from TG showed that the degradation temperature was higher for all composites when compared to the pure PLA and that the PLA composites filled with unmodified celluloses resulted in the best thermal stability. No comparable difference was found in glass transition temperature (T g) and melting temperature (T m) between pure PLA and Fe-modified and unmodified CLF- and MCC-based PLA biocomposites. DMA results showed that the storage modulus in glassy state was increased for the biocomposites when compared to pure PLA. The results obtained from a femtostat showed that electrical conductivity of Fe-modified CLF and MCC samples were higher than that of unmodified samples, thus indicating that the prepared biocomposites have potential uses where conductive biopolymers are needed. These modified fibers can also be tailored for fiber orientation in a matrix when subjected to a magnetic field.
KeywordsBiocomposite Cellulose complexes Polylactic acid Thermal analysis
The authors thank Ontario center of excellence (OCE) and Biocar for the financial support. Thanks are also due to Mr. Jaganathan Ulaganathan, Mr. Carlos Quijano and Dr. Sayed Abthigir for their assistance.