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Advances in the Properties of Polylactides Based Materials: A Review

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Renewable resource based bioplastics are the next generation of materials, which will play a major role in building of a sustainable bioeconomy. Polylactide, PLA is the most well known renewable resource based biodegradable plastics. The realm of PLA bioplastics is expanding through innovative research methodologies, products, and processes. There is a pressing need to enhance the versatility of PLA bioplastics, so that they can compete with conventional polymers. The inherent brittleness, poor melt strength, low heat deflection temperature (HDT), narrow processing window and low thermal stability of polylactides pose considerable scientific challenges and limit their largescale applications. Numerous efforts such as copolymerization, plasticization, blending, clay based nanocomposite and fiber reinforced composite fabrication have been attempted to modify the properties of PLA bioplastics. Here, a review article pertaining to the developments in the methods to improve the properties of polylactides is presented. The article is focused on the reviewing the approaches such as copolymerization, plasticization, blending, clay based nanocomposite and fiber reinforced composite fabrication used for enhancing the properties of PLA. The mechanical, thermal, rheological, and morphological properties of PLA based materials are discussed. The article also talks about the structure, deformation mechanism and rheology of the polylactides.
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Keywords: BIOCOMPOSITES; BIOPOLYMERS; BLENDING; COPOLYMERIZATION; NANOCOMPOSITES; PLASTICIZATION; POLYLACTIDES

Document Type: Review Article

Publication date: August 1, 2007

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  • The goal of the creation of a biobased economy is challenging to agriculture, forestry, academia, government and industry. The extractable resources of the Earth are finite, regardless of the quibble over when they will be depleted. The economic, political and social demands for biobased chemicals, materials and energy are expected to radically transform the materials industries, particularly the plastics industry as well as the biofuel industry. These changes will be based on the principles of sustainability, eco-efficiency, industrial ecology, and green chemistry and engineering. In keeping with the growth of knowledge in this field, there is a strong need for a forum to share original research related to biobased materials and bioenergy. The Journal of Biobased Materials and Bioenergy (JBMB) has been created as an international peer-reviewed periodical to fulfill the need for communication in these research areas. This journal will encompass related research activities in all fields of science, engineering and the life sciences.
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