The Effect of Soil Burial Degradation of Oil Palm Trunk Fiber-filled Recycled Polypropylene Composites

Journal of Reinforced Plastics and Composites (Impact Factor: 1.5). 06/2009; 29(11):1653-1663. DOI: 10.1177/0731684409102939


Soil burial tests were carried out to evaluate the effect of biodegradation on the mechanical properties (tensile, flexural, and impact) and the mass loss of OPT fiber-filled RPP composites, as compared to control samples (virgin PP and RPP without filler). The composite samples were prepared using 30% w/w of OPT filler with a size of 100 µm. Compounding was carried out using a Haake Rheodrive 500 twin-screw compounder operating at 190°C and 8 MPa for 30 min. The effect of biodegradation was performed in a perspex plastic apparatus for 12 months. Assessments of the mechanical properties and the percentage of mass loss were carried out at 3, 6, and 12 months of exposure in soil. The mechanical properties (tensile, flexural, and impact) of materials deteriorate with an increase in exposure time. The effects of biodegradation increase with burial period, i.e., from 0 to 12 months. The tensile properties, flexural properties, and impact strength of the composites decrease by about 38—47%, 37—50%, and 47%, respectively, as compared to the value before the biological test. In contrast, the mass of the composite samples increased by ∼12.7%, whereas for PP and RPP, it increased by around 10.7 and 9.2%, respectively. SEM analysis was conducted to analyze the deterioration and the poor fiber—matrix bonding of composites.

56 Reads
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In this work, the oil palm empty fruit bunch (EFB) fiber was used as a source of lignocellulosic filler to fabricate a novel type of cost effective biodegradable composite, based on the aliphatic aromatic co-polyester poly(butylene adipate-co-terephtalate) PBAT (Ecoflex™), as a fully biodegradable thermoplastic polymer matrix. The aim of this research was to improve the new biocomposites' performance by chemical modification using succinic anhydride (SAH) as a coupling agent in the presence and absence of dicumyl peroxide (DCP) and benzoyl peroxide (BPO) as initiators. For the composite preparation, several blends were prepared with varying ratios of filler and matrix using the melt blending technique. The composites were prepared at various fiber contents of 10, 20, 30, 40 and 50 (wt %) and characterized. The effects of fiber loading and coupling agent loading on the thermal properties of biodegradable polymer composites were evaluated using thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA). Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) was used for morphological studies. The chemical structure of the new biocomposites was also analyzed using the Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy technique. The PBAT biocomposite reinforced with 40 (wt %) of EFB fiber showed the best mechanical properties compared to the other PBAT/EFB fiber biocomposites. Biocomposite treatment with 4 (wt %) succinic anhydride (SAH) and 1 (wt %) dicumyl peroxide (DCP) improved both tensile and flexural strength as well as tensile and flexural modulus. The FTIR analyses proved the mechanical test results by presenting the evidence of successful esterification using SAH/DCP in the biocomposites' spectra. The SEM micrograph of the tensile fractured surfaces showed the improvement of fiber-matrix adhesion after using SAH. The TGA results showed that chemical modification using SAH/DCP improved the thermal stability of the PBAT/EFB biocomposite.
    Molecules 02/2012; 17(2):1969-91. DOI:10.3390/molecules17021969 · 2.42 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: A new class of biocomposites based on oil palm empty fruit bunch fiber and poly(butylene adipate-co-terephthalate) (PBAT), which is a biodegradable aliphatic aromatic co-polyester, were prepared using melt blending technique. The composites were prepared at various fiber contents of 10, 20, 30, 40 and 50 wt% and characterized. Chemical treatment of oil palm empty fruit bunch (EFB) fiber was successfully done by grafting succinic anhydride (SAH) onto the EFB fiber surface, and the modified fibers were obtained in two levels of grafting (low and high weight percentage gain, WPG) after 5 and 6 h of grafting. The FTIR characterization showed evidence of successful fiber esterification. The results showed that 40 wt% of fiber loading improved the tensile properties of the biocomposite. The effects of EFB fiber chemical treatments and various organic initiators content on mechanical and thermal properties and water absorption of PBAT/EFB 60/40 wt% biocomposites were also examined. The SAH-g-EFB fiber at low WPG in presence of 1 wt% of dicumyl peroxide (DCP) initiator was found to significantly enhance the tensile and flexural properties as well as water resistance of biocomposite (up to 24%) compared with those of untreated fiber reinforced composites. The thermal behavior of the composites was evaluated from thermogravimetric analysis (TGA)/differential thermogravimetric (DTG) thermograms. It was observed that, the chemical treatment has marginally improved the biocomposites' thermal stability in presence of 1 wt% of dicumyl peroxide at the low WPG level of grafting. The improved fiber-matrix surface enhancement in the chemically treated biocomposite was confirmed by SEM analysis of the tensile fractured specimens.
    International Journal of Molecular Sciences 01/2012; 13(2):1327-46. DOI:10.3390/ijms13021327 · 2.86 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In order to reduce the environmental impact of the accumulation of synthetic polymer waste, especially in the case of products with a short shelf life, such as disposable diapers and sanitary napkins, this study evaluated the biodegradation of samples of polypropylene (PP) modified with an organic additive free of transition metals. The samples were prepared using a single-screw extruder, then ground with liquid nitrogen and processed by thermal compression molding into the form of plates. They were then submitted to a respirometric test involving biodegradation carried out at 58°C for 120 days. The samples were characterized according to their physical, thermal, and morphological properties. The results verified that the modified PP showed evidence of enhanced degradation through increased CO2 generation and weight loss during incubation. The thermal analysis revealed an increase in the degree of crystallinity and a decrease in the melt temperature. SEM micrographs showed exfoliation, the appearance of holes, and surface deterioration. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2014, 131, 41054.
    Journal of Applied Polymer Science 11/2014; 131(22). DOI:10.1002/app.41054 · 1.77 Impact Factor
Show more