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Preparation and properties of rice husk-filled plasticized wheat gluten biocomposites



Rice husk (RH) reinforced wheat gluten/glycerol (Gly/Glut) and rice husk (R) reinforced wheat gluten-glycerol/chitosan-polyethylene glycol (Gly/Glut-CP) biocomposites with varying rice husk loading were prepared. Morphological, thermal, and mechanical properties of the biocomposites were investigated by scanning electron microscope, thermogravimetric analyzer, and tensile testing machine, respectively. Water absorption properties and surface functional groups of the biocomposite films were determined by weight measurement and attentuated total reflectance Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, respectively. The results were discussed in terms of chitosan-polyethylene glycol (CP) and rice husk content. Although CP and 1-g rice husk addition decreased maximum degradation temperature of Gly/Glut film, adding of more rice husk did not considerably change the maximum degradation temperature. As a result of adding CP, the tensile strength of Gly/Glut film was increased by about 183%, whereas tensile modulus was decreased by about 34%. POLYM. ENG. SCI., 54:1477–1483, 2014. © 2013 Society of Plastics Engineers