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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1942/21231

Title: Poly(3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyhexanoate)/Organomodified Montmorillonite Nanocomposites for Potential Food Packaging Applications
Authors: Vandewijngaarden, Jens
Wauters, Ruben
Marariu, Marius
Dubois, Philippe
Carleer, Robert
Yperman, Jan
D'Haen, Jan
Ruttens, Bart
Schreurs, Sonja
Lepot, Nadia
Peeters, Roos
Buntinx, Mieke
Issue Date: 2016
Abstract: Poly(3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyhexanoate) (PHBHHx) is a versatile, biobased and biodegradable copolymer from the family of polyhydroxyalkanoates. This study aims to further ameliorate its properties in order to enhance its applicability for food packaging purposes through preparation of organomodified montmorillonite clay (OMMT) nanocomposites. Nanocomposites based on pure PHBHHx as well as commercial PHBHHx granulate, after a previous dry-mixing with OMMT in concentrations of 1, 3, 5 and 10 wt%, were prepared using melt blending and compression molding. Investigation of the samples showed well dispersed nanofiller and highly intercalated nanocomposites, resulting in a continuous decrease in gas permeability, lowering O2, CO2 and water vapor permeability with about 5–7 % and approximately 40 % at OMMT concentration of 1 and 10 wt%, respectively. Besides gas permeability, other properties were affected as well. Thermal stability of the samples increased gradually up to 5 wt% nanofiller, but was reduced at 10 wt%. In order to investigate the effects of OMMT and molecular weights on PHBHHx crystallization, nanocomposites were also produced by solvent-casting and compared to those obtained by melt-blending. Crystallization was retarded, because of severe lowering of molecular weight due to processing-induced chain scission, catalyzed by OMMT moisture. However, this reduction was counteracted for a large part by using commercial PHBHHx granulate, which has shown better crystallization properties. The samples were rendered increasingly more brittle, displaying higher Young’s modulus and severely reduced elongation at break. From this study it appeared that, upon viewing all affected properties as a whole, the sample based on commercial PHBHHx and containing 3 wt% OMMT shows most promise for possible applications, however further research must be performed in order to exploit their fullest potential.
Notes: Buntinx, M (reprint author), Hasselt Univ, Res Grp Packaging Ctr, IMO IMOMEC, Wetenschapspk 27, B-3590 Diepenbeek, Belgium. jens.vandewijngaarden@uhasselt.be; mieke.buntinx@uhasselt.be
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1942/21231
DOI: 10.1007/s10924-016-0751-1
ISI #: 000377450900003
ISSN: 1566-2543
Category: A1
Type: Journal Contribution
Validation: ecoom, 2017
Appears in Collections: Research publications

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