Effect of wood powder on polymer foam nucleation



It is usually reported that wood particles in wood/polymer composite foams can act as nucleating sites. Since high wood contents are used, it is difficult to determine exactly the effect of wood particles. In this study, LDPE was chemically foamed in a twin-screw extruder, and small amounts of wood (0–5 phr) were added to determine their effect. Particle size was investigated by using three mesh sizes: 45–61, 104–125, and 180–210 μm. As expected, wood particles acted as nucleating agents that substantially reduced cell size and increased cell density. J. VINYL. ADDIT. TECHNOL., 12:19–24, 2006. © 2006 Society of Plastics Engineers