Superheated Steam Treatment of Oil Palm Mesocarp Fiber Improved the Properties of Fiber-Polypropylene Biocomposite

Noor Ida Amalina Ahamad Nordin, Hidayah Ariffin, Mohd Ali Hassan, Yoshihito Shirai, Yoshito Ando, Nor Azowa Ibrahim, Wan Md Zin Wan Yunus

Abstract


The effect of fiber surface modification by superheated steam (SHS) treatment and fiber content (30 to 50 wt.%) was evaluated relative to the mechanical, morphology, thermal, and water absorption properties of oil palm mesocarp fiber (OPMF)/polypropylene (PP) biocomposites. SHS treatment of OPMF was conducted between 190 and 230 C for 1 h, then the SHS-treated fiber was subjected to melt-blending with PP for biocomposite production. The biocomposite prepared from SHS-OPMF treated at 210 C with 30 wt.% fiber loading resulted in SHS-OPMF/PP biocomposites with a tensile strength of 20.5 MPa, 25% higher than untreated-OPMF/PP biocomposites. A significant reduction of water absorption by 31% and an improved thermal stability by 8% at T5%degradation were also recorded. Scanning electron microscopy images of fractured SHS-OPMF/PP biocomposites exhibited less fiber pull-out, indicating that SHS treatment improved interfacial adhesion between fiber and PP. The results demonstrated SHS treatment is an effective surface modification method for biocomposite production.

Keywords


Superheated steam treatment; Surface modification; Fiber-matrix bond; Biocomposite; Mechanical properties

Full Text: PDF

Welcome to BioResources! This online, peer-reviewed journal is devoted to the science and engineering of biomaterials and chemicals from lignocellulosic sources for new end uses and new capabilities. The editors of BioResources would be very happy to assist you during the process of submitting or reviewing articles. Please note that logging in is required in order to submit or review articles. Martin A. Hubbe, (919) 513-3022, hubbe@ncsu.edu; Lucian A. Lucia, (919) 515-7707, lucian.lucia@gmail.com URLs: bioresourcesjournal.com; http://ncsu.edu/bioresources ISSN: 1930-2126