Biocomposites from Rice Straw Nanofibers: Morphology, Thermal and Mechanical Properties
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2020
Agricultural residues are major potential resources for biomass and for material production. In this work, rice straw residues were used to isolate cellulose nanofibers of different degree of oxidation. Firstly, bleached rice fibers were produced from the rice straw residues following chemical extraction and bleaching processes. Oxidation of rice fibers mediated by radical 2,2,6,6-tetramethylpiperidine 1-oxyl (TEMPO) at pH 10 was then applied to extract rice cellulose nanofibers, with diameters of 3-11 nm from morphological analysis. The strengthening capacity of rice nanofibers was tested by casting nanocomposite films with poly(vinyl alcohol) polymer. The same formulations with eucalyptus nanofibers were produced as comparison. Their thermal and mechanical performance was evaluated using thermogravimetry, differential scanning calorimetry, dynamic mechanical analysis and tensile testing. The glass transition of nanocomposites was shifted to higher temperatures with respect to the pure polymer by the addition of rice cellulose nanofibers. Rice nanofibers also acted as a nucleating agent for the polymer matrix. More flexible eucalyptus nanofibers did not show these two phenomena on the matrix. Instead, both types of nanofibers gave similar stiffening (as Young's modulus) to the matrix reinforced up to 5 wt.%. The ultimate tensile strength of nanocomposite films revealed significant enhancing capacity for rice nanofibers, although this effect was somehow higher for eucalyptus nanofibers.