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Crystallization behavior of starch-filled polypropylene

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Abstract

Starches of different granule sizes, including corn, rice, and amaranth starches, were used to prepare starch-filled polypropylene (PP) and the effect of starch granule size on crystallization behavior PP was investigated. Differential scanning calorimetry and scanning electron microscopy were used to monitor the energy changes of the crystallization of the melt and to characterize the morphology of PP/starch composites, respectively. Little interaction was observed between starch and PP despite the difference in starch granule size. The crystallization temperature of PP decreased with the addition of starch and this decrease became more apparent with increasing starch granule size. During nonisothermal crystallization, the dependency of the relative degree of crystallinity on time was described by the Avrami equation. The addition of starch decreased the overall crystallization rate of PP, which was attributed to an increase in the activation energy of crystallization under nonisothermal conditions according to the Kissinger equation. An increase in starch granule size of starch would increase the crystallization activation energy of PP and consequently decrease its crystallization rate. © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci 92: 484–492, 2004

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