Interest in natural fiber-reinforced composites (NFRC) is progressively growing both in terms of academia research and industrial applications thanks to their abundant advantages such as low cost, biodegradability, eco-friendly nature and relatively good mechanical properties. However, their widespread use is still presumed as challenging because of the specificity of their non-homogeneous structure, limited knowledge on their machinability characteristics and parameter settings, to avoid defects associated with the machining process. The present work is aimed to investigate the effect of the cutting tool geometry and material on the drilling-induced delamination, thrust force and hole quality produced when drilling a fully biodegradable flax/poly (lactic acid) composite laminate. Three drills with different geometries and material were used at different drilling conditions to evaluate the machinability of the fabricated composites. The experimental results indicated that the choice of cutting tool, in terms of material and geometry, has a noticeable influence on the cutting thrust force and subsequently drilling-induced damages. The lower value of thrust force and better hole quality was observed using high-speed steel (HSS) drill, whereas Carbide drill (with point angle of 130o) resulted in the highest value of thrust force. Carbide drill presented higher wear resistance and stability in variation of thrust force with a number of holes drilled, while HSS drill showed the lower value of thrust force during the drilling process. Finally, within the selected cutting range, the delamination damage increased noticeably with feed rate and moderately with spindle speed.
Due to increasing environmental pressure for biodegradable products, especially in polymeric materials, in order to meet the demands of the biological cycles of the circular economy, new materials have been developed as a sustainability strategy. This study proposes a composite material developed from the biodegradable polymer PLA Ecovio® (polylactic acid - PLA) with natural sisal fibers, where the soybean ester was used as a plasticizer, which can aid in adhesion between the materials and fibers, making the most attractive final composite from an environmental point of view. The composites were obtained by extrusion. The materials tests were produced and submitted to biodegradation tests. Through the biodegradation tests, it can be seen that the biodegradable polymer composition with 5% sisal fiber presented about 12.4% more biodegradability compared to the polymer without fiber addition. It has also been found that the plasticizer was not a compatible with fibers and the polymer. Finally, fibers help to anticipate the decomposition process of the material when subjected to conditions of a landfill. Therefore, its intrinsic properties are not affected during its use, only the biodegradation process begins after its exposure to landfill conditions.
Today, the pollution due to non-degradable material such as plastics, has led to studies about the development of environmental-friendly material. Because of biodegradability obtained from natural sources, polylactid acid (PLA) and ijuk fiber are interesting to modify into a composite. This material is also expected to reduce the impact of environmental pollution. Surface modification of ijuk fiber through alkalinization with 0.25 M NaOH solution for 30 minutes was aimed to enhance its compatibility to PLA, in order to improve properties of the composite such as the mechanical properties. Alkalinization of the ijuk fibers annihilates some surface components such as lignin, wax and hemicelloluse, so the pore on the surface clearly appeared, decreasing of the density and diameter of the ijuk fibers. The change of the ijuk fiber properties leads to increase the mechanical properties of PLA composites reinforced the ijuk fibers through strengthening of the mechanical interlocking with the PLA matrix. An addition to enhance the distribution of the fibers in the PLA matrix, the stirring during DCM solvent evaporation from the mixture of the ijuk fibers and the dissolved-PLA can reduce amount of the trapped-voids and fibers pull-out phenomena, which can decrease the mechanical properties of the composite.
Poly(lactic acid) (PLA) is a biodegradable polymer which has good mechanical properties, however, its brittleness limits its usage especially in packaging materials. Therefore, in this work, PLA based polyurethane films were prepared by synthesizing with different types of isocyanates; methylene diisocyanate (MDI) and hexamethylene diisocyanates (HDI). For this purpose, PLA based polyurethane must have good strength and flexibility. Therefore, polycaprolactone which has better flexibility were prepared with PLA. An effective way to endow polylactic acid with toughness is through chain-extension reaction of the polylactic acid pre-polymer with polycaprolactone used as chain extender. Polyurethane prepared from MDI showed brittle behaviour, while, polyurethane prepared from HDI showed flexibility at same concentrations.
This work was focused in to study the compatibility, dispersion and exfoliation of modified nanoclays in biodegradable polymers and evaluate its effect on the physical, mechanical and thermal properties on the biodegradable matrix used. The formulations have been developed with polylactic acid (PLA) and organically modified montmorillonite-type commercial nanoclays (Cloisite 15, Cloisite 20, and Cloisite 30B) in the presence of a plasticizer agent, specifically Polyethylene Glycol of low molecular weight. Different compositions were evaluated, in order to identify the influence of each nanoclayin the polymeric matrix. The mixtures were characterized by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), X-ray diffraction (DRX), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and Tensile Test. These tests have allowed understanding the behavior of each of the mixtures developed.
Biopolymers have gained much attention as ecofriendly alternatives to petrochemical-based plastics because they are biodegradable and can be produced from renewable feedstocks. One class of biopolyester with many potential environmentally friendly applications is polylactic acid (PLA) and polycaprolactone (PCL). The PLA/PCL biodegradable copolyesters were synthesized by bulk ring-opening copolymerization of successively added Llactide (LL) and ε-caprolactone (CL) in the presence of toluene, using 1-hexanol as initiator and stannous octoate (Sn(Oct)2) as catalyst. Reaction temperature, reaction time and amount of catalyst were evaluated to obtain optimum reaction conditions. The results showed that the %conversion increased with increases in reaction temperature and reaction time, but after a critical amount of catalyst was reached the %conversion decreased. The yield of PLA/PCL biopolymer achieved 98.02% at the reaction temperature 160 °C, amount of catalyst 0.3 mol% and reaction time of 48 h. In addition, the thermal properties of the product were determined by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA).