Effect of recycling on mechanical behaviour of biocompostable flax/poly(L-lactide) composites

Type Article
Date 2008-09
Language English
Author(s) Le Duigou Antoine2, Pillin Isabelle2, Bourmaud Alain2, Davies PeterORCID1, Baley Christophe2
Affiliation(s) 1 : IFREMER, Ctr Brest, Mat & Struct Grp, F-29280 Plouzane, France.
2 : Univ Bretagne Sud, Lab Ingn Mat Bretagne, Equipe Polymeres & Composites, F-56321 Lorient, France.
Source Composites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing (1359-835X) (Elsevier), 2008-09 , Vol. 39 , N. 9 , P. 1471-1478
DOI 10.1016/j.compositesa.2008.05.008
WOS© Times Cited 137
Keyword(s) Mechanical properties, Recycling, Flax fibres, PLLA
Abstract The biocompostability of natural fibre-reinforced biopolymers, also known as biocomposites, makes them an attractive alternative to glass fibre-reinforced petrochemical polymers. The aim of this work is to study the capacity of flax/PLLA (poly(L-lactide)) biocomposite (20% and 30% fibres by weight) to be recycled. Mechanical properties were evaluated initially, and shown to be similar to those of glass/PP and superior to hemp/PP and sisal/PP composites. Then after repeated injection cycles tensile properties were shown to be conserved until the third cycle. Matrix degradation and fibre aspect ratio were followed using molecular weight measurements, thermal and rheological analyses, image analysis of sections and SEM fractography. These techniques revealed a lower molecular weight, lowering of glass transition temperature, reduction of fibre length, and separation of fibre bundles with injection cycles. Nevertheless, the property retention after three cycles under extreme recycling conditions (100% recycling with no added virgin polymer) indicate the promising recyclability of these materials. (C) 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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