Extraction, Characterization and Evaluation of Reinforcing Nanocellulose in Polyvinyl Alcohol (PVA)

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Addis Ababa University


Incorporating nanocellulose into different materials have become an attractive research topics for production of nanocomposite materials. The objective of this study was to extract nanocellulose from the bagasse and apply as reinforcement in the PVA polymer, and evaluate the effectiveness of the reinforcement. The extraction of nanocellulose was performed by acid hydrolysis with 50 % wt. H2SO4 at 45°C for 45 minutes and 40 % yield was obtained. The particle size analysis by dynamic light scattering (DLS) showed the mean particle size found was 348.6 nm, confirming the product was nanocellulose. The Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) indicated the effectiveness of pretreatment in removing lignin and hemicellulose. The nanocellulose was reinforced in PVA polymer by solvent casting process. The water absorption results revealed that reduction in percentage of water absorption from 82 % for neat PVA to 59 % PVA/ 7 %NC. This results were confirmed by increment in tensile strength from 33 MPa for neat PVA to 53 MPa for PVA/ 5 %NC and reduction in elongation at break about 2.4 folds with respect to neat PVA. The SEM micrograph showed uniform distribution and formation of network structure through hydrogen bonding. The comparative and cluster analysis showed the nanocellulose reinforced PVA films exhibited highest tensile strength, lower elongation at break and lower water absorption with respect to bagasse and cellulose reinforced PVA as well as with neat PVA film.



Process Engineering Stream