Enzymatic synthesis of lignin–siloxane hybrid functional polymers



This study combines the properties of siloxanes and lignin polymers to produce hybrid functional polymers that can be used as adhesives, coating materials, and/or multifunctionalized thin-coating films. Lignin-silica hybrid copolymers were synthesized by using a sol-gel process. Laccases from Trametes hirsuta were used to oxidize lignosulphonates to enhance their reactivity towards siloxanes and then were incorporated into siloxane precursors undergoing a sol-gel process. In vitro copolymerization studies using pure lignin monomers with aminosilanes or ethoxytrimethylsilane and analysis by 29Si NMR spectroscopy revealed hybrid products. Except for kraft lignin, an increase in lignin concentration positively affected the tensile strength in all samples. Similarly, the viscosity generally increased in all samples with increasing lignin concentration and also affected the curing time.