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Surface modification of spruce wood flour and effects on the dynamic fragility of PLA/wood composites

Authors

  • Adriana Gregorova,

    Corresponding author
    1. Institute for Chemistry and Technology of Materials, Graz University of Technology, Stremayrgasse 16, 8010 Graz, Austria
    • Institute for Chemistry and Technology of Materials, Graz University of Technology, Stremayrgasse 16, 8010 Graz, Austria
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  • Marta Hrabalova,

    1. Institute for Natural Materials Technology, University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences, Konrad Lorenz Strasse 20, A-3430 Tulln, Austria
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  • Rene Kovalcik,

    1. Lindner Mobilier, Druzstevna 7, 92242 Madunice, Slovakia
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  • Rupert Wimmer

    1. Burckhardt-Institut, Wood Technology and Wood-based Composites Unit, Faculty of Forest Sciences and Forest Ecology, Büsgenweg 4, D-37077 Göttingen, Germany
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Abstract

Poly (lactic acid) (PLA), a biodegradable aliphatic semicrystalline polyester was filled with 40 wt% spruce wood flour (WF), to produce composite materials. Hydrothermal treatment, as well as maleic anhydride, vinyltrimethoxysilane, and stearic acid surface treatments were applied. The influence of surface modifications for WF was tested in terms of thermal, mechanical, and viscoelastic properties. The recorded results show that in both, the untreated and treated PLA/WF composites, the rigid amorphous phase content has been enhanced. The presence of WF causes a stiffness increase of the PLA/WF composites, while damping factor was decreased. The effect of wood surface modifications on interfacial compatibility with PLA was estimated by dynamic fragility parameter m calculated according the Williams-Landel-Ferry equation. The incorporation of untreated WF increased dynamic fragility of PLA/WF composites markedly, whereas used silane, maleic anhydride and hydrothermal treatments lead to lower values of parameter m. POLYM. ENG. SCI., 2011. © 2010 Society of Plastics Engineers

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