Thermally Grafting Aminosilane onto Kenaf-Derived Cellulose and Its Influence on the Thermal Properties of Poly(Lactic Acid) Composites

Yee Bond Tee, Rosnita A. Talib, Khalina Abdan, Nyuk Ling Chin, Roseliza Kadir Basha, Khairul Faezah Md Yunos


The effects of thermally grafting hydrolysed 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane (APS) onto kenaf-derived cellulose and the influence of incorporating them into poly(lactic acid) (PLA) were investigated. Composites containing 30 wt.% cellulose (C) and silane-grafted cellulose (SGC) were melt-blended into PLA before being hot pressed into 0.3-mm films. The silane grafting of cellulose was confirmed via Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) with the presence of Si-O-Si, Si-O-cellulose, -Si-C-, and Si-O-C bonds, and –NH2 groups despite post ethanol washing. Using thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), it was determined that the thermal stability of the cellulose improved by 8 °C after silane grafting. As for the composites, PLA/SGC improved the thermal stability by 12 °C as compared to PLA/C. From differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), adding C into PLA slightly reduced the glass transition temperature, Tg, of the PLA from 59 °C to 57 °C, which remained unchanged with silane grafting. PLA displayed double melting peaks from its melt-recrystallization behaviour. While the final melting temperature at 150 °C was not affected, incorporating C and SGC influenced the intensity of the melting peaks. The significant reduction in crystallisation temperature from 113°C to 102 °C and 105 °C, and the increase in crystallinity by almost two fold, indicated that cellulose was an effective nucleating agent.


Poly(lactic acid); Kenaf; Cellulose; Silane coupling agent; Composite; Thermal properties

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