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Using CO2-Based Polymer Polypropylene Carbonate to Enhance the Interactions in Poly(lactic acid)/Wood Fiber Biocomposites

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The behavior of a biodegradable CO2-based polymer polypropylene carbonate (PPC) as polymer matrix of wood fiber (WF) composites was examined and compared with that of using poly(lactic acid) (PLA) as the matrix. The PPC/WF composites displayed poor mechanical properties as compared to PLA/WF composites because PPC is an amorphous polymer with low Tg and poor thermal stability. However, when PPC was used in conjunction with PLA in WF composites, the mechanical strength and modulus of the composites could match or even exceed the level of PLA/WF composites. The strong intermolecular interactions between PPC and WF and those between PPC and PLA enhanced the bonding between compatible PPC/PLA matrix and WF fillers, resulting in improved flexural strength and modulus over a broader temperature range that reduced the impact of the low Tg effect of PPC. The crystalline structures of PLA were also modified in the PPC-PLA/WF composites, while the thermal stability of the composites was improved.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 May 2015

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  • The Journal of Renewable Materials (JRM) publishes high quality peer reviewed original research on macromolecules and additives obtained from renewable/biobased resources. Utilizing a multidisciplinary approach, JRM introduces cutting-edge research on biobased monomers, polymers, additives (both organic and inorganic), their blends and composites. It showcases both fundamental aspects and new applications for renewable materials. The fundamental theories and topics pertain to chemistry of biobased monomers, macromoners and polymers, their structure-property relationship, processing using sustainable methods, characterization (spectroscopic, morphological, thermal, mechanical, and rheological), bio and environmental degradation, and life cycle analysis. Demonstration of use of renewable materials and composites in applications including adhesives, bio and environmentally degradable structures, biomedicine, construction, electrical & electronics, mechanical, mendable and self-healing systems, optics, packaging, recycling, shape-memory, and stimulus responsive systems will be presented.
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