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A morphological view of the sodium 4,4′-distyrylbiphenyl sulfonate fluorescent brightness distribution on regenerated cellulose fibers



Evidence of the sorption of the whitening agent sodium 4,4′-distyrylbiphenyl sulfonate in the presence of the anionic surfactant sodium dodecylsulfate or the cationic surfactant dodecyl trimethyl ammonium chloride on regenerated cellulose fibers is given by several microscopy techniques. Scanning electron microscopy provided images of the cylindrical fibers with dimensions of 3.5 cm (length) and 13.3 μm (thickness), with empty cores of 1 μm diameter and a smooth surface. Atomic force microscopy showed a fiber surface with disoriented nanometric domains using both tapping-mode height and phase image modes. Atomic force microscopy also showed that the whitening agent and surfactant molecules were sorbed onto the fiber surface, in agreement with the adsolubilization sorption model. Transmission electron microscopy showed fibers with nanometric parallel cylinders, surrounded by holes where the fluorescent whitening molecules accumulated. On the basis of these techniques, we conclude that the sorption process occurs preferentially on the fiber surface in contact with the water solution, and under saturated conditions, the whitening agent penetrates into the pores and are simultaneously sorbed on the pore walls bulk, forming molecular aggregates. © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2010