Mimusops elengi Seed Shell Powder as a New Bio-Filler for Polypropylene-based Bio-Composites

Mathialagan Muniyadi, Tiffany Yit Siew Ng, Yamuna Munusamy, Zhong Xian Ooi

Abstract


Mimusops elengi seed shell powder (MESSP) was introduced as a new bio-filler in polypropylene (PP). The MESSP was characterized using a particle size analyzer, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and a thermogravimetric analyzer. MESSP was successfully melt mixed with polypropylene to produce bio-composite at various MESSP loading. The processability and properties of the bio-composites were characterized by using processing torques, differential scanning calorimetry, tensile test, water absorption, and SEM. The processability of PP was not affected by the addition of MESSP, which was revealed from the minimum changes in the processing torques, melting temperature, crystallization temperature, and degree of crystallinity. The tensile strength and elastic modulus of the bio-composites were improved with an addition of MESSP of up to 10 wt.%. However, the elongation at break and resistance to water absorption decreased slightly with increased MESSP loading. Morphological observations revealed that the MESSP showed good dispersion and adhesion in the PP matrix of up to 5 wt.% MESSP. Above 5 wt.% MESSP, agglomerates formed, which influenced the physical-mechanical properties of the PP and MESSP bio-composites. Results indicated that PP/MESSP composites can be used to replace PP in applications such as car dashboards and door panel, furniture, and rigid packaging.

Keywords


Bio-composites; Mimusops elengi; Polypropylene; Tensile test; Water absorption; Scanning electron microscope

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