Vigilancia tecnológica

Vigilancia Tecnológica

Development and Characterization of Environmentally Friendly Wood Plastic Composites from Biobased Polyethylene and Short Natural Fibers Processed by Injection Moulding

Environmentally friendly wood plastic composites (WPC) with biobased high density polyethylene (BioHDPE) as the polymer matrix and hemp, flax and jute short fibers as natural reinforcements, were melt-compounded using twin-screw extrusion and shaped into pieces by injection molding. Polyethylene-graft-maleic anhydride (PE-g-MA) was added at two parts per hundred resin to the WPC during the extrusion process in order to reduce the lack in compatibility between the lignocellulosic fibers and the non-polar polymer matrix. The results revealed a remarkable improvement of the mechanical properties with the combination of natural fibers, along with PE-g-MA, highly improved stiffness and mechanical properties of neat BioHDPE. Particularly, hemp fiber drastically increased the Young’s modulus and impact strength of BioHDPE. Thermal analysis revealed a slight improvement in thermal stability with the addition of the three lignocellulosic fibers, increasing both melting and degradation temperatures. The incorporation of the fibers also increased water absorption due to their lignocellulosic nature, which drastically improved the polarity of the composite. Finally, fire behavior properties were also improved in terms of flame duration, thanks to the ability of the fibers to form char protective barriers that isolate the material from oxygen and volatiles.

Fecha publicación: 22/05/2021

Autor: Celia Dolza

Referencia: doi: 10.3390/polym13111692

MDPI (polymers)

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