Thermal stability and miscibility of poly(hydroxybutyrate) and soda lignin blends

Industrial Crops and Products (Impact Factor: 3.21). 11/2010; 32(3):656-661. DOI: 10.1016/j.indcrop.2010.08.001

ABSTRACT The thermal properties and miscibility of poly(hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) and soda lignin blends were investigated by thermogravimetry analysis (TGA), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and Fourier transform infra-red spectroscopy (FTIR) over the entire range of composition. Although the addition of soda lignin shifts the onset of PHB decomposition to lower temperatures, the PHB/lignin blends are thermally more stable than PHB over a wider temperature range. The thermal behaviour of these blends as measured by TGA suggests compatibility for the blends containing up to 40 wt% soda lignin. These results correlate well with the glass transition temperature (Tg) data where a single Tg was obtained for these blends. At higher lignin to PHB ratios, two Tgs depicting immiscibility were obtained. The infra-red data show that the miscibility of the blends containing up to 40 wt% soda lignin is associated with specific hydrogen bonding interactions between the reactive functional groups in lignin with the carbonyl groups of PHB.Research highlights▶ PHB/soda lignin blends are miscible up to 40 wt% lignin so that the Gordon–Taylor and Kwei equations are obeyed. ▶ The miscibility of PHB/soda lignin blends are due to the association between the OH groups of lignin and the carbonyl groups of PHB. ▶ Soda lignin reduces the initial PHB decomposition temperature though it stabilises PHB decomposition.

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