Project

Development of hybrid biodegradable composites' manufacturing technology for the automotive industry

Goal: The aim of the project is to develop processing technology of biodegradable composite reinforced with fibrous fillers, for shaping by injection molding. The premise of research is to reduce the effect of mechanical degradation of natural fibers which occurs during conventional processing techniques. The application of the new processing technology will allow a homogeneous distribution of the fibrous filler in the polymer matrix. The benefits of implementing the project results will include: increased competitiveness of automotive market manufacturers by offering environmentally friendly products, reduced mass of the produced elements, compared to commonly used construction materials, as well as support for domestic producers of natural fibers.


„Opracowanie technologii wytwarzania hybrydowych kompozytów biodegradowalnych dla branży motoryzacyjnej” finansowany przez Narodowe Centrum Badań i Rozwoju w ramach Programu LIDER VIII

Umowa Nr LIDER/25/0148/L-8/16/NCBR/2017 z dnia 19.12.2017

Date: 1 January 2018 - 31 December 2020

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Project log

Mateusz Barczewski
added a research item
Basalt powder (BP) is a promising eco-friendly filler for polymeric composites. Due to its chemical composition, it can alter the effectiveness of various modifying agents used in the polymer industry. In this study, the influence of simultaneous addition of 5 wt% of basalt powder and 0.5 or 1 wt% of a sorbitol-based nucleating agent (NA) on the structure and properties of isotactic polypropylene (iPP) composites was analyzed. The potential chemical reactions of BP and NA were evaluated by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. The influence of the additives on the crystallization of the polymer was studied by differential scanning calorimetry, optical microscopy in polarized light, and rheological measurements. The kinetics of crystallization was analyzed using Mo and Friedman methods. The structure of the composites was observed by scanning electron microscopy. The mechanical properties were also evaluated. It was found that the BP reacts with the NA, which limits its ability to form the microfibrillated network in the melt. As a result, the crystallization behavior of the nucleated basalt-filled iPP is almost the same as in the case of the composite without the NA. However, the samples containing both NA and BP present good mechanical properties and adhesion between the polymer and the filler.
Mateusz Barczewski
added a research item
Legislative restrictions and the needs of consumers have created a demand for sustainable materials. Polylactide (PLA) is a biodegradable polyester with advantageous mechanical properties, however, due to its low crystallization rate, it also has low thermomechanical stability. Its range of application temperatures can be widened using nucleating agents and fillers including basalt powder (BP), a waste product from the mining industry. This study analyzed the possibility of enhancing the properties of a PLA-BP composite by chemically treating the filler. Basalt powder was subjected to silanization with 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane or γ-glycidoxypropyltrimethoxysilane and mixed with PLA at 5–20 wt%. The nucleating effect of a potassium salt of 3,5-bis(methoxycarbonyl) (LAK-301) in the silanized composite was also evaluated. The properties of the materials with silanized BP were compared with the unmodified basalt powder. The miscibility of the filler and the polymer was assessed by oscillatory rheometry. The structure of the composites was studied using scanning electron microscopy and their thermomechanical properties were analyzed using dynamic mechanical thermal analysis. Mechanical properties such as tensile strength, hardness and impact strength, and heat deflection temperature of the materials were also determined. It was concluded that BP-filled nucleated PLA composites presented satisfactory thermomechanical stability without silanization, but chemical treatment could improve the matrix–filler interactions.
Mateusz Barczewski
added a research item
The development of novel composite materials with beneficial mechanical, thermal and electrical properties often focus only on the final properties of the products. However, in many cases their significant application potential may be suppressed by limitations resulting from their rheological and processing properties. The isotactic polypropylene (iPP) composites filled with basalt powder (BP) are known for their good thermomechanical stability and stiffness. The paper presents the complex results of off-line rheological measurements (oscillatory, capillary and torque rheometry) related to processing behavior obtained in a laboratory environment with the use of a processing machine (single screw extruder), which allow understanding the different manner of the processing behavior occurring during the melt processing of iPP-BP composites. It was found that the addition of BP may cause unusual, beneficial effect of lowered viscosity of the melt. While the addition of up to 5 wt% of BP results in a profitable reduction of the pressure in the barrel during extrusion without influence on the throughput, a higher amount of the filler may lead to significant processing limitations due to strong wall slip.
Mateusz Barczewski
added a research item
This article presents the effect of twin-screw extrusion processing parameters, including temperature and rotational speed of screws, on the structure and properties of four grades of polylactide (PLA). To evaluate the critical processing parameters for PLA and the possibilities for oxidative and thermomechanical degradation, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR), oscillatory rheological analysis, and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) measurements were used. The influence of degradation induced by processing temperature and high shearing conditions on the quality of the biodegradable polyesters with different melt flow indexes (MFIs)was investigated by color analysis within the CIELab scale. The presented results indicate that considering the high-temperature processing of PLA, the high mass flow index and low viscosity of the polymer reduce its time of residence in the plastifying unit and therefore limit discoloration and reduction of molecular weight due to the degradation process during melt mixing, whereas the initial molecular weight of the polymer is not an essential factor.
Mateusz Barczewski
added a research item
The paper presents a study of the thermomechanical behavior of polylactide (PLA) composites filled with two different types of basalt fillers: micrometric basalt fibers (BMF) and basalt powder (BP) incorporated into the polymeric matrix with the amount of 5, 10 and 20 wt%. The composites were manufactured by melt processing and subjected to the annealing process in order to obtain a highly crystalline structure without the addition of nucleating agents. We found a remarkable enhancement of the thermomechanical stability of polylactide-based composites filled with basalt powder (BP) and micrometric basalt fibers (BMF) in the case of use of the thermal post-processing procedure. Despite a relatively low nucleation ability of the fillers on PLA, their presence in the case of annealed PLA-samples caused an additional increase up to 15 °C of the heat deflection temperature. The BP-filled composites reveal comparable thermomechanical properties improvement to BMF with higher resistance to adhesion loss in the polymer-filler interface during annealing.
Mateusz Barczewski
added a research item
In the course of the study, polylactide (PLA)/basalt powder (BP) composites were fabricated, incorporating micrometric particle‐shaped waste filler into the biodegradable polyester matrix to obtain improved thermomechanical stability of the final products. The mechanical, thermomechanical, and thermal properties of PLA‐based composites were evaluated, accounting for the influence of the simultaneous incorporation of 1 wt% of the potassium salt of 3,5‐bis(methoxycarbonyl) benzenesulfonate (LAK) used as the nucleating agent and 5‐20 wt% of basalt powder. As each of the applied modifying agents improves the thermomechanical stability of PLA, a beneficial effect of the co‐modification on thermal properties was expected to widen the temperature range of application of the composites. Differential scanning calorimetry measurements showed an increase of crystallinity up to 55% in the case addition of both additives (BP and LAK) on the PLA. The thermomechanical stability of the composites was determined as a heat deflection temperature (HDT) test. High modification efficiency of BP was obtained only with the simultaneous addition of the LAK nucleating agent. The synergistic effect of both modifiers allowed us to achieve a more than 100% increase in the HDT value to almost 160°C. The mechanical properties were assessed by the static tensile test, Dynstat impact measurements, and a ball indentation hardness evaluation. Even though a 10 MPa decrease in tensile strength was observed due to the addition of 20 wt% of BP and 1% of LAK, the tensile modulus increased from 2.5 to 3.25 MPa and hardness rose from 140 to 175 MPa. The addition of 5 wt% of basalt powder caused a 2 kJ/m2 increase in impact strength. The modification of PLA with the filler and the nucleating agent improved not only thermal stability but also the mechanical properties of the material.
Jacek Andrzejewski
added a research item
The study focuses on the development of polyoxymethylene (POM)/poly(lactic acid) (PLA) blends with increased impact and thermal resistance. The study was conducted in two phases; in the first part, a series of unmodified blends with PLA content of 25, 50, and 75 wt.% was prepared, while the second part focused on the modification of the PLA/POM (50/50) blends. An ethylene/butyl acrylate/glycidyl methacrylate terpolymer (E/BA/GMA) elastomer (EBA) was used to improve the impact strength of the prepared blends, while reactive blending was used to improve interfacial interactions. We used a multifunctional epoxy chain extender (CE) as the compatibilizer. Static tensile tests and notched Izod measurement were used to evaluate the mechanical performance of the prepared samples. The thermomechanical properties were investigated using dynamic mechanical thermal analysis (DMTA) analysis and heat deflection temperature (HDT)/Vicat softening temperature (VST) methods. The crystallinity was measured using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and wide-angle X-ray diffraction (WAXS) measurements, while the rheology was evaluated using a rotational rheometer. The paper also includes a structure analysis performed using the SEM method. The structural tests show partial miscibility of the POM/PLA systems, resulting in the perfect compatibility of both phases. The impact properties of the final blends modified by the EBA/CE system were found to be similar to pure POM resin, while the E modulus was visibly improved. Favorable changes were also noticeable in the case of the thermomechanical properties. The results of most of the conducted measurements and microscopic observations confirm the high efficiency of the reaction for PLA as well as for the modified POM/PLA mixtures.
Mateusz Barczewski
added a research item
W pracy przedstawiono ocenę możliwości zapobiegania degradacji hydrolitycznej PLA poprzez zwiększenie stopnia krystaliczności polimeru. Opisane zostały mechanizmy procesów jego degradacji. Omówiono wpływ przyspieszonego starzenia na strukturę, skład chemiczny, właściwości termomechaniczne i reologiczne polimeru, a także oceniono wpływ degradacji hydrolitycznej na stan powierzchni badanych próbek. This thesis presents the assessment of the possibility of preventing hydrolysis degradation of PLA by increasing the crystallinity of the polymer. In addition, the mechanisms of degradation on the structure, chemical composition, thermo-mechanical and rheological properties of the polymer was discussed as well as the influence of hydrolytic degradation on the surface condition of the tested samples.
Olga Mysiukiewicz
added a research item
The main aim of this study was to chemically modify the plant fiber surface. Hemp, flax fibers and cotton trichomes were subject of surface treatments using silanization, acetylation, benzoylation, and mercerization processes. The fiber properties were evaluated with the use of fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), wideangle X-ray analysis (WAXS) and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). Additionally, humidity and color of the modified fibers were evaluated. Chemical treatment of the plant fibers reduced their hydrophilic nature, increased the moisture resistance, and improved their thermal stability. In all the cases the silanization process proved to be the most effective method of improving fiber thermal stability and moisture resistance, yet mercerization and benzoylation methods offered satisfying results as well.
Mateusz Barczewski
added a project goal
The aim of the project is to develop processing technology of biodegradable composite reinforced with fibrous fillers, for shaping by injection molding. The premise of research is to reduce the effect of mechanical degradation of natural fibers which occurs during conventional processing techniques. The application of the new processing technology will allow a homogeneous distribution of the fibrous filler in the polymer matrix. The benefits of implementing the project results will include: increased competitiveness of automotive market manufacturers by offering environmentally friendly products, reduced mass of the produced elements, compared to commonly used construction materials, as well as support for domestic producers of natural fibers.
„Opracowanie technologii wytwarzania hybrydowych kompozytów biodegradowalnych dla branży motoryzacyjnej” finansowany przez Narodowe Centrum Badań i Rozwoju w ramach Programu LIDER VIII
Umowa Nr LIDER/25/0148/L-8/16/NCBR/2017 z dnia 19.12.2017