Transparent, flexible, and high-strength regenerated cellulose/saponite nanocomposite films with high gas barrier properties


Correspondence to: A. Isogai (Email:


Regenerated cellulose-saponite nanocomposite films were prepared from LiOH/urea solutions, and exhibited high optical transparency and flexibility. The saponite platelets formed intercalated nanolayered structures in the composites. The longitudinal directions of both the cellulose II crystallites and the saponite platelets were preferentially oriented parallel to the film surface in the composites. The good nanodispersibility and high orientation of the saponite platelets in the composite films resulted in high mechanical strength, high Young's modulus, and good thermal dimensional stabilities, and gas barrier properties in the composites, compared with a reference cellulose film. Moreover, the tensile strength and Young's modulus of the composite film reached 241 MPa and 7.7 GPa, respectively, when a simple drawing process was applied to the wet composite film; this is probably owing to the improvement in the orientation of the cellulose II crystallites and saponite platelets in the composites. The composite films also showed high toughness and ductility. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 130: 3168–3174, 2013